Ramsar address to the UNFCCC SBSTA meeting, November 2005

17/12/2005

Address to the UNFCCC SBSTA, 29 November 2005

by

Peter Bridgewater, Secretary General

Mr Chairman

I would like to present a brief statement on behalf of the 147 contracting Parties to the Ramsar Convention on wetlands, which has just concluded its ninth Conference of the Parties in Kampala Uganda.

First I should recall the Conventions resolution VIII.3 from 2002, which

Called UPON Contracting Parties to manage wetlands so as to increase their resilience to climate change and extreme climatic events, and to reduce the risk of flooding and drought in vulnerable countries by, inter alia, promoting wetland and watershed protection and restoration;

Mr Chairman that resolution had many other actions for Parties regarding the important role of climate change on wetlands, and the way in which wisely, or badly, managed wetlands can influence climate change both positively and negatively. Wetlands, in fact, contain a greater proportion of stored carbon than other ecosystems, underscoring the need for integrated management of all ecosystems to mitigate against, and adapt to, the effects of climatic and other global changes.

At COP9 parties particularly
Noted Resolution VIII.3 on Climate change and wetlands: impacts, adaptation and mitigation, and the associated need to strengthen cooperation with the UNFCCC;

And
Requested the Secretary General to cooperate closely with relevant conventions, including through the Joint Liaison Group for the three Rio Conventions (UNFCCC, CBD and UNCCD).

Finally Mr Chairman, the COP, in adopting a resolution on "The role of the Ramsar Convention in the prevention and mitigation of impacts associated with natural phenomena, including those induced or exacerbated by human activities

Also saw a clear a link with this Convention in carrying out the intention of the Resolution.

Mr Chairman it is clear that the Ramsar Convention, through both its COP and through its subsidiary science body has many opportunities for synergy with the UNFCCC, and we look forward to developing and deepening such cooperation in the coming months and years through, inter alia, the JLG process.

Thank you Mr Chairman.

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Number of » Contracting Parties: 168 Sites designated for the
» List of Wetlands of
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2,186 Total surface area of designated sites (hectares): 208,674,247

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