European Archaeological Council presents strategy for heritage management of wetlands in World Wetlands Day event in Brussels


On the occasion of World Wetlands Day 2002, a pre-briefing cocktail event was organised on 22 January in the European Parliament building in Brussels (Belgium) by GLOBE and the European Archaeological Council (or Europae Archaeologiae Consilium, EAC). Set up in 1999, the EAC brings together the heads of services responsible under law for archaeological heritage in the Council of Europe member states - in other words, managers of the European heritage environment of which wetlands form a crucial part. Central to the presentation on 22 January was EAC's paper presenting a strategy for the heritage management of wetlands in Europe, which was delivered by Dr Adrian Olivier, EAC's President (cf. attachment EU wetlands launch). This was a follow-up of his presentation when he chaired a workshop on "Cultural aspects of wetlands as a tool for their conservation and sustainable use" during the 4th European Regional Meeting on the Ramsar Convention in Slovenia last October.

Mr Anders Wijkman, the president of GLOBE - the Global Legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment - an environmental network of elected parliamentarians, welcomed the participants to this informal briefing. He explained that GLOBE is an influential group of parliamentarians spanning 100 countries around the world. GLOBE EU provides a forum for environmental dialogue, campaigning and joint action to its members in the European Parliament. The GLOBE Europe organisation assembles 300 key members of national parliaments in all of the continent's 40 countries. GLOBE works with civil society organisations and in partnership with major international institutions and played a key role in the negotiation of the Kyoto Protocol, the Aarhus Convention on citizens' rights or the Antartic Treaty. Members of parliament who belong to GLOBE have direct access to a network of influential colleagues who are, like them, committed to promoting a better environment.

The Ramsar Bureau is particularly pleased by the launch of EAC's Strategy for the Heritage Management of Wetlands and the many efforts for its implementation already undertaken by EAC's members at national and local level. Ramsar's Regional Coordinator for Europe participated in the evening briefing. He stressed the importance of the event in view of the guiding principles on the cultural aspects of wetlands in preparation for COP8 (cf. EAC launch statement attached). The event was honoured by the presence of Ms Martina Matlova, Deputy Environment Minister of the Czech Republic. She and the representatives of GLOBE, MEPs and other parliamentarians expressed a strong interest in the Convention on Wetlands and the theme of World Wetlands Day 2002.

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