CBD and Ramsar call for case studies on wetland and river basin management


N O T I F I C A T I O N, 13 September 2002


Dear Madam/Sir,

The River Basin Initiative is a key element of the Joint Work Plan between the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar, Iran, 1971), which was endorsed through decision V/2 of the fifth meeting of the Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). At its sixth meeting, the Conference of the Parties recognized, in paragraph 3 of decision VI/2, the importance of the River Basin Initiative for implementation of the ecosystem approach and requested the Executive Secretary to strengthen collaboration with the Ramsar Convention on the implementation of the River Basin Initiative.

In paragraph 8(c) of the programme of work on biological diversity of inland water ecosystems (decision IV/4), the Conference of the Parties requested the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) to compile case studies on watershed, catchment and river basin management experiences and practices, to synthesize the lessons emerging from these studies, and to disseminate that information through the clearing-house and other appropriate mechanisms.

The River Basin Initiative conducted a need and contribution assessment for integration of wetlands and biodiversity into river basin management (to guide the implementation of the initiative) amongst Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Ramsar Convention starting in mid-March 2001. The questionnaire was prepared considering paragraph 8(c) of the CBD programme of work on biological diversity of inland water ecosystems. More than 150 responses from 90 countries were received primarily from the conventions' focal points. The major conclusion of the report was that 97 per cent of the respondents agreed that there was a need for better integration of the management of wetlands, biodiversity and river basins. The top priority topics for information sharing were: (1) community involvement in river basin or water resources management; (2) planning procedures and mechanisms; (3) monitoring and research; (4) policies and legal instruments; (5) management interventions; (6) transboundary/international cooperation; and (7) institutional arrangement.

In response to the above decisions of the CBD Conference of the Parties and as a follow-up to the questionnaire on need and contribution Assessment, the Secretariats of the Convention on Biological Diversity and the Convention on Wetlands are pleased to invite your Government/Organization to submit case studies on topics listed in the attached form, at your earliest convenience but no later than 20 October 2002 to the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity. Case studies can be sent by mail, facsimile, or e-mail (coordinates are indicated in the attached form). Attached please find the topics and outline, which could be used as guidance for the preparation of case studies.

Please accept, Madam/Sir, the assurance of our highest consideration.

Delmar Blasco, Secretary General Hamdallah Zedan, Executive Secretary
Ramsar Convention Bureau Convention on Biological Diversity


1. Introduction
Provide a brief description of the focal matter of the case study. Describe the national context or the case study site/river basin (provide a location map if a site or river basin). Indicate the key agencies or stakeholders involved and the status of the work (completed/In progress /proposed)

2. Previous Management Strategy/Issues
Briefly describe the past management of the area i.e. before the present situation described in the case study; its impacts on ecosystems, species and/or people; and the catalyst for change (e.g. a major event/issue or a general policy change)?

3. The New Approach and stakeholder involvement
Describe the new approach adopted; the lead institution/s and how other agencies/stakeholders were involved; the resources needed and their sources.

4. Implementation /Achievements
What has been achieved, the obstacles and opportunities.

5. Lessons learned
What are the lessons learned/ information derived from the case study which can provide an example or guidance to others?

6. Documentation
Describe any specific reports, manuals, videos or other documentation available which describes in more details to the case study along with contact details of key persons or agencies who may be able to provide additional information. Please send copies of any such materials if they are available.


Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity
393 St. Jacques Street West, Suite 300
Montreal, Quebec,

Fax: +1 (514) 288 6588
E-mail: secretariat@biodiv.org

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