The 9th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties

21/06/2005


"Wetlands and water: supporting life, sustaining livelihoods"
9th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties
to the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971)
Kampala, Uganda, 8-15 November 2005
Agenda item IX
Ramsar COP9 DR1

Additional scientific and technical guidance for implementing
the Ramsar wise use concept

Explanatory Note by the Secretariat

1. At its March 2005 meeting, as part of its response to Resolution VIII.45 in seeking to streamline the process of preparing and considering COP Resolutions (see DOC. SC31-5), the Standing Committee's Subgroup on COP9 approved in Decision COP9 SG-3 the proposal from the Scientific and Technical Review Panel to bring to the COP two technical draft Resolutions, one containing proposed additional guidance as annexes and the other recommending future scientific and technical work for the Convention. These materials were approved by the 31st meeting of the Standing Committee for COP9 consideration.

2. The draft COP9 Resolution (COP9 DR1) attached to this note is designed to cover the range of key scientific and technical implementation frameworks and supporting technical guidelines prepared by the STRP during the 2003-2005 triennium as priority tasks in the STRP 2003-2005 work plan, as directed by the Standing Committee from the tasks requested by COP8.

3. Each of these frameworks and guidelines forms an Annex to this DR. For ease of reference, each of these Annexes is included in the COP9 papers as a separate document (COP9 DR1 Annex A to Annex E). It is anticipated that DR1 and its Annexes will be introduced for COP9 approval under Agenda item IX.

4. The second technical COP9 Resolution, covering future priorities for scientific and technical implementation of the Convention, is COP9 DR2.

Additional scientific and technical guidance for implementing
the Ramsar wise use concept

1. AWARE of the suite of technical and scientific guidelines and other materials prepared by the Scientific and Technical Review Panel (STRP) to support Contracting Parties in their implementation of wetland conservation and wise use;

2. NOTING that the 8th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP8) instructed the STRP to prepare further advice and guidance for consideration by Contracting Parties at COP9 on topics including, inter alia, inventory and assessment, wise use, water resource management, Ramsar site designation and management, and assessing the effectiveness of the implementation of the Convention;

3. THANKING the STRP for its work in preparing the advice and guidance annexed to this Resolution, as well as for the supporting technical reviews and reports being made available to Contracting Parties and others as Ramsar Technical Reports; and

4. ALSO THANKING the Government of Sweden and IUCN, WWF, the World Fish Centre, and the Water Research Commission (South Africa), which have provided financial support to the Panel and its Working Groups for the preparation of this advice and guidance and technical reports, and EXPRESSING GREAT APPRECIATION to the many organizations that have provided significant in-kind support to the work of the Panel;

THE CONFERENCE OF THE CONTRACTING PARTIES

5. APPROVES the Conceptual Framework for the wise use of wetlands and the maintenance if their ecological character (Annex A to this Resolution) and its updated definitions of "wise use" and "ecological character", and CONFIRMS that these supersede all previous definitions of these terms;

6. ALSO APPROVES the revised Strategic Framework and guidelines for the future development of the List of Wetlands of International Importance (Annex B to this Resolution), INSTRUCTS the Ramsar Secretariat to introduce these changes in the preparation of a new edition of Ramsar Wise Use Handbook 7, including revisions to the Information Sheet on Ramsar Wetlands (RIS), and URGES all Contracting Parties preparing a RIS for the designation of a new site for the Ramsar List and for updating the RIS for an existing stie to submit the information to the Ramsar Secretariat in this revised format;

7. WELCOMES the frameworks, guidelines and other advice provided as annexes C, D, and E to this Resolution and URGES Contracting Parties to make good use of them as appropriate, adapting them as necessary to suit national conditions and circumstances and within the frameworks of existing regional initiatives and commitments;

8. URGES Contracting Parties to draw these frameworks, guidelines and other advice to the attention of all relevant stakeholders, including inter alia government ministries, departments and agencies, water and basin management authorities, non-governmental organizations, and civil society; and FURTHER URGES Contracting Parties to encourage these stakeholders to take these guidelines into account, together with those of the Ramsar 'Toolkit' of Wise Use Handbooks 2nd edition, in their decision-making and activities which relate to the delivery of the wise use of wetlands through the maintenance of their ecological character; and

9. INSTRUCTS the Ramsar Secretariat to disseminate widely the frameworks and guidelines annexed to this Resolution, including through amendment and updating of the Ramsar 'Toolkit' of Wise Use Handbooks.

Annexes

Annex A A Conceptual Framework for the wise use of wetlands and the maintenance of their ecological character
Annex B Revised Strategic Framework and guidelines for the future development of the List of Wetlands of International Importance
Annex C An Integrated Framework for the Ramsar Convention's water-related guidance
Additional guidances annexed, as follows:
i) River basin management: additional guidance and framework for analysis of case studies;
ii) Guidelines for the management of groundwater to maintain wetland ecological character.
Annex D Ecological 'outcome-oriented' indicators for assessing the implementation effectiveness of the Ramsar Convention
Annex E An Integrated Framework for wetland inventory assessment and monitoring (IF-WIAM)
Additional guidance annexed, as follows:
i) Guidelines for rapid assessment of inland, coastal and marine wetland biodiversity.

For reasons of economy, this document is printed in a limited number, and will not be distributed at the meeting. Delegates are requested to bring their copies to the meeting and not to request additional copies.

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