Ramsar and the Small Island Developing States

28/03/2003


Ramsar's past, on-going and future activities related to Small Island Developing States (SIDS)

By Margarita Astrálaga
Americas Senior Advisor
Marine and Coastal Issues Focal Point
Ramsar Convention Secretariat
astralaga@ramsar.org

Since 1994, when the Barbados Programme of Action for the Sustainable Development of Small Island Developing States was adopted, the Ramsar Convention Secretariat has supported a number of activities to assist these States in its implementation.

Within the 14 agreed priority areas and actions related to environmental and development planning that should be undertaken by SIDS with the cooperation and assistance of the international community, Ramsar concentrated its support on activities related to providing support for developing and implementing integrated coastal zone management plans and strategies; design of monitoring programmes for coastal and marine resources, and support for accession to the Ramsar Convention and the United Nations Environment Programme Specially Protected Areas Protocol for the Wider Caribbean.

Regarding freshwater issues and biodiversity, Ramsar has supported, and continues to support community involvement in designation, management and conservation of wetland sites (see annex 1- Ramsar sites in Small Island Developing States and other developing country members of AOSIS, annex 2- Dependent territory island sites ) and provided a set of guidelines for management planning, designation of sites, integration of watersheds and wetlands into the national planning process, review of national legislation, international cooperation, and education and public awareness.

Additionally, under the joint programme of work with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) special efforts have been made to identify methodologies for carrying out rapid assessments of inland waters in SIDS.

Support was provided to strengthen institutional arrangements and administrative capacity of Ramsar Administrative Authorities, through direct assistance, as well as encouragement to establish cross-sectoral National Wetland Committees, with full involvement of NGOs and local communities. Training and education at different levels was also supported through a number of projects. Full details of the projects carried out since 1994 are attached as annex 3.

In addition the Ramsar Convention Secretariat is assisting some SIDS with their development of GEF projects, currently notably in the Comoros Islands.

The Ramsar Convention Secretariat supports joint action with regional institutions and has signed Memoranda of Understanding with the Secretariat of the Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region (CAR/RCU) and with the South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP). With the latter a joint work plan has been adopted, and at present Ramsar is exploring options for improving its capacity in Oceania, by establishing a Ramsar support service in the region.

Our partner organization, Wetlands International, as part of its support to the implementation of the Convention, and on behalf of the Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs (DGIS), is currently funding projects in Fiji, Marshall Islands, Haiti, Jamaica, the Dominican Republic and Cuba. (For details see Annex 3.) Support for accession, Ramsar site designation and capacity building and training continues to be provided to Pacific Island States by Wetlands International, including through funding from the government of Australia, and by partner organization WWF.

Of particular relevance for implementation during the next triennium is Resolution VIII.42, on Small Island Developing States in the Oceania Region, adopted by our 8th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties which took place in Valencia, Spain, 18-26 November 2002. The resolution identifies the key challenges and priority issues particular to the countries and territories of the Oceania region, and encourages International Organizations to assist those Island States in overcoming these challenges. (See Annex 4)

In future Ramsar will also seek to cooperate closely with the CBD Secretariat on the development of CBD's new programme of work on islands, through the Conventions' joint work plan.

The Ramsar Convention Secretariat will continue working closely and providing support to Small Island Developing States in the implementation of the Barbados Action Plan during the next triennium.

Annex 1

Small Island Developing States with Ramsar Sites

Ramsar Reg.

Country

Site Name

Designation Date

Area in ha.

AFRICA

CAPE VERDE

Curral Velho

7/18/2005

Surface

 

CAPE VERDE

Lagoa de Rabil

7/18/2005

not yet

 

CAPE VERDE

Lagoa de Pedra Badejo

7/18/2005

confirmed!

 

COMOROS

Lake Dziani Boundouni

2/09/1995

30

 

GUINEA-BISSAU

Lagoa de Cufada

14/05/90

39,098

 

MADAGASCAR

Lac Tsimanampetsotsa

9/25/1998

45,604

 

MADAGASCAR

Complexe des lacs de Manambolomaty

9/25/1998

7,491

 

MAURITIUS

Rivulet Terre Rouge Estuary Bird Sanctuary

5/30/2001

26

 

SEYCHELLES

Port Launay Coastal Wetlands

11/22/2004

121

ASIA

BAHRAIN

Hawar Islands

10/27/1997

5,200

 

BAHRAIN

Tubli Bay

10/27/1997

1,610

 

INDONESIA

Berbak

4/8/1992

162,700

 

INDONESIA

Danau Sentarum

8/30/1994

80,000

 

MALAYSIA

Tasek Bera

11/10/1994

38,446

 

PHILIPPINES

Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary

7/1/1994

5,800

 

PHILIPPINES

Naujan Lake National Park

11/12/1999

14,568

 

PHILIPPINES

Agusan Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary

11/12/1999

14,836

 

PHILIPPINES

Tubbataha Reefs National Marine Park

11/12/1999

33,200

 

SRI LANKA

Bundala

15/06/1990

6,210

 

SRI LANKA

Annaiwilundawa Tanks Sanctuary

3/8/2001

1,397

NEOTROPICS

ANTIGUA and

 

 

 

 

BARBUDA

Codrington Lagoon

6/02/2005

3,600

 

BAHAMAS

Inagua National Park

2/7/1997

32,600

 

BARBADOS

Graeme Hall Swamp

12/12/2005

33

 

BELIZE

Crooked Tree Wildlife Sanctuary

4/22/98

6,637

 

BELIZE

Sarstoon Temash National Park

10/19/2005?

16,955

 

CUBA

Ciénaga de Zapata

4/12/2001

452,000

 

CUBA

Buenavista

11/18/2002

313,500

 

CUBA

Ciénaga de Lanier y Sur de la Isla de la Juventud

11/18/2002

126,200

 

CUBA

Gran Humedal del Norte de Ciego de Avila

11/18/2002

226,875

 

CUBA

Humedal Delta del Cauto

11/18/2002

47,836

 

CUBA

Humedal Río Máximo-Cagüey

11/18/2002

22,000

 

DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

Lago Enriquillo

5/15/2002

20,000

 

JAMAICA

Black River Lower Morass

10/7/1997

5,700

 

SAINT LUCIA

Savannes Bay

2/19/2002

25

 

SAINT LUCIA

Mankoté

2/19/2002

60

 

SURINAME [note]

Coppenamemonding

22/07/85

12,000

 

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Nariva Swamp

12/21/1992

6,234

 

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Buccoo Reef / Bon Accord Lagoon Complex

7/08/2005

1,287

 

TRINIDAD & TOBAGO

Caroni Swamp

7/08/2005

8,398

OCEANIA

FIJI

Upper Navua Conservation Area

4/11/2006

615

 

MARSHALL ISLANDS

Jaluit Atoll Conservation Area

7/13/2004

69,000

 

PALAU

Lake Ngardok

10/18/2002

493

 

PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Tonda Wildlife Management Area

3/16/1993

590,000

 

PAPUA NEW GUINEA

Lake Kutubu

9/25/1998

4,924

 

SAMOA

Lake Lanoto'o

7/10/2004

Surface

 

 

 

 

not yet

 

 

 

 

confirmed!

Note: Suriname is listed amongst island states because it is a member of AOSIS.

Dependent and overseas territories:

FRENCH TERRITORIES:

GUADELOUPE

Grand Cul-de-Sac Marin de la Guadeloupe

12/8/1993

20,000

 

FRENCH GUYANA

Basse-Mana

12/8/1993

59,000

 

FENCH GUYANA

Marais de Kaw

12/8/1993

137,000

NETHERLANDS TERRITORIES:

ARUBA

Het Spaans Lagoen

5/23/1980

70

 

BONAIRE ISLAND

Het Lac

5/23/1980

700

 

BONAIRE ISLAND

Het Pekelmeer

5/23/1980

400

 

BONAIRE ISLAND

Klein Bonaire Island and adjacent sea

5/23/1980

600

 

BONAIRE ISLAND

Het Gotomeer

5/23/1980

150

 

BONAIRE ISLAND

De Slagbaai

5/23/1980

90

 

U.K : TERRITORIES:

TURKS & CAICOS ISLANDS

North, Middle & East Caicos Islands

6/27/1990

58,617

 

CAYMAN ISLANDS

Booby Pond and Rookery

9/21/1994

82

 

BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS

Western Salt Ponds of Anegada

5/11/1999

1,071

 

BERMUDA

Spittal Pond

5/11/1999

10

 

BERMUDA

Somerset Long Bay Pond

5/11/1999

1

 

BERMUDA

Warwick Pond

5/11/1999

2

 

BERMUDA.

Hungry Bay Mangrove Swamp

5/11/1999

2

 

BERMUDA

Pembroke Marsh East

5/11/1999

8

 

BERMUDA

Lover's Lake Nature Reserve

5/11/1999

2

 

BERMUDA

Paget Marsh

5/11/1999

11

 

BRITISH INDIAN OCEAN TERRITORY

Diego Garcia

7/04/2001

35,424

 

FALKLAND ISLANDS  (ISLAS MALVINAS).

Bertha's Beach

9/24/2001

4,000

 

FALKLAND ISLANDS  (ISLAS MALVINAS).

Sea Lion Island

9/24/2001

1,000

 

CYPRUS, WESTERN SOVEREIGN BASE AREA

Akrotiri

3/20/2003

2,171

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