Global Review of Wetland Resources


[Note: On 3 October 1997, the Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention, Mr Delmar Blasco, and Dr Michael Moser of Wetlands International signed a contract for implementation of the project described in this outline. The project has been designed in fulfilment of Action 6.1.3 of the Strategic Plan -- "Utilize information from regional wetland directories, national scientific inventories of wetlands and other sources, to begin development of a quantification of global wetland resources, as baseline information for considering trends in wetland conservation or loss" -- and follows up on Brisbane Resolution VI.21 (2b). -- Web Editor.]

Project outline: Global Review of Wetland Resources

Contractor: Wetlands International (Wetland Inventory and Monitoring Specialist Group)

Budget: SFR 71,675

Duration: October 1997 - May 1999

A project developed for the Ramsar Convention Bureau by Wetlands International to help meet Action 6.1.3 of the Ramsar Strategic Plan 1997-2002, and with funding support from the United Kingdom.


  • to provide an overview of international, regional and national wetland inventories and other general information on global wetland resources
  • to recommend how best to use this information as a global baseline for considering trends in wetland conservation or loss
  • to identify future wetland inventory development priorities so as to improve future reporting accuracy on the global wetland resource


  • Technical coordination by Dr Max Finlayson (eriss, Australia), Coordinator of Wetlands International's Wetland Inventory & Monitoring Specialist Group, with primary review tasks undertaken through eriss
  • regional analyses of wetland inventories undertaken by Wetlands International's three regional headquarters
  • Project Steering Committee: a representative from each Wetlands International regional office, Ramsar Convention Bureau, and the UK, plus selected experts
  • workshop (late 1998) to review draft final outputs


  • comprehensive (ring-bound) report (also in electronic form), containing global and regional analyses and specific summaries and recommendations, covering:
    • wetland areas and distribution, and rate and extent of wetland loss; with analyses of methods and data reliability
    • regional (Ramsar regions) analysis of wetland inventories, including coverage of wetland types, data/information fields, collection, handling and storage and update methods, and remote sensing potential
    • assessment of availability and types of information on wetland location and extent, benefits and values, extent of loss/degradation, land tenure/management structures, and adequacy of inventory updating programmes
    • proposal of preferred options for inventory standardisation, including data/information fields, data collection and handling, updating, and (where possible) regional/national priority areas
    • assessment of options for future data management for wetland inventories
  • analyses supported, where appropriate, with maps and diagrams
  • report supplemented with an electronic format bibliography and meta-database
  • outputs designed to form the basis of CD-ROM or WWW presentation to enhance data resource access

Report summary for circulation with documentation for 7th Conference of Contracting Parties, 1999

Full report available for the 1999 Conference

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