We benefit in so many ways from wetland ecosystems but most people do not recognize wetlands’ vital value in sustaining our lives. More than a billion people around the world make their living directly from wetlands, yet some 64% of the world’s wetlands have disappeared in the last century.
To counter this alarming loss, promoting wetlands and their vital role for humanity is urgently needed. Strategic and targeted communication must be put in place.
The Ramsar Convention’s Programme on communication, capacity building, education, participation and awareness (CEPA), was adopted through Resolution XII.9 at COP12 in 2015. It superseded earlier approved CEPA Resolutions in 1999, 2002 and 2008.
The Ramsar Administrative Authorities are the key implementers of the Programme. Their National Focal Points work with the country’s CEPA Focal Points, NGOs, Ramsar Regional Initiatives and other civil society organizations and wetland visitor centres.
Effective use of CEPA requires a planned systematic approach which reflects the interests of stakeholders and beneficiaries. Approaches need to be tailored to the local context, culture and traditions. Nonetheless, international experiences can guide national planners in formulating country-specific CEPA plans.
These pages provide an open forum for the exchange of CEPA ideas and resource materials as well as identifying the diverse activities through which Contracting Parties and the many other wetland actors are implementing the CEPA Programme.