World Wetlands Day in Italy

01/03/2007

Rome and elsewhere



I would like to inform you about the activities that have been carried out in Italy on the occasion of the World Wetlands Day 2007.

In a press release the Minister of the Environment has focused the attention on the changes that wetlands have undergone, both in Italy and in other Mediterranean countries, in the last century.

He underlined that the effects of climatic changes are clearly visible and documented and particular attention has to be paid to the Mediterranean area already subject to chronically dry seasons.

He remarked that Wetlands, and the environment as a whole, are affected by global warming, and the main risk is the variation of the normal water cycle, which in turn lead to facilitate the desertification process.

He stated that Italy will be able to play a primary role for the proposal and the performance of new strategies and initiatives that aim to respect the Kyoto Protocol and the Convention of the United Nations against Desertification through the protection of wetlands, by restoring their natural functions where necessary, keeping intact fisheries and ensuring that they remain productive and sustainable for all of us.

Finally, the Minister announced that the procedure for including other Italian wetlands in the Ramsar list has begun.

On the occasion several initiatives have been undertaken in many wetlands sites.

The “Saline di Trapani e Paceco” Sicilian Regional Nature Reserve has organized tutorial activity for the teachers of the schools of Trapani, Paceco, Erice and Valderice and a WWF exhibition on the topic of the day of this year - “Wetlands support fisheries keep them healthy” - as well as on the value of biodiversity conservation.

The book: “Esplorare un confine: spunti e proposte di attività didattiche per lo studio delle zone umide e degli ambienti di transizione”, edited by the University of the Salento, has been presented at “Le Cesine” National Nature Reserve.

The Italian Association “WWF for Natures ONG-ONLUS” has organized tour guides in the wetlands managed by the Association, to emphasize the benefits deriving from the corrected management of the wetlands.

Best regards

Patrizia De Angelis
Ministry of the Environment, Territory and Sea
Directorate General for Nature Protection
Head of Division VI "Protection of Terrestrial and Marine Environment from Pollution"
Via Capitan Bavastro, 174
00154 ROME - ITALY

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Number of » Contracting Parties: 168 Sites designated for the
» List of Wetlands of
International Importance
2,181 Total surface area of designated sites (hectares): 208,545,658

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