An Integrated Wetland Assessment Toolkit from IUCN
An Integrated Wetland Assessment Toolkit: A guide to good practice has just been published by IUCN. With this new set of tools, it should be possible to measure the economic value of a wetland, assess the species that live there and the importance of a wetland for people’s livelihood, all in one go! Designed for development agencies, industries and governments it allows these decision-makers to assess effectively what they stand to lose by reclaiming/draining a wetland. According to the authors, bringing together approaches that allow the integrated assessment of conservation, livelihood and economic values is a real step forward from previous techniques. The Ramsar stamp of approval is given by our Secretary General, Anada Tiéga: in the Foreword to the toolkit he recognizes the importance of the approach used and “urges all those concerned with managing wetlands to make use of the toolkit as a means to secure the wise us of wetlands”.
The three main sections cover the integrated assessment process, the tools themselves, and illustrated examples of the application of the tools through detailed case studies. While the 144 pages may seem daunting to readers, it is well illustrated with abundant figures, text boxes and simple tables ensuring that readers understand the assessment process outlined and the tools that will be applied in the field. The tools cover biodiversity assessment tools, livelihood assessment tools as well as field-tested economic valuation tools.
CEPA tools are in evidence throughout this toolkit with the use of participatory techniques an essential component of the assessments. The fundamental role of communication in making use of this tool is well summarized in the toolkit: “However good the results of a valuation study are, they will have little impact on decision-making if nobody sees, reads or is persuaded by them. There is an art to presenting information, and communicating it effectively. In many cases, the technical experts who carry out the valuation study itself may not be the best placed to do this – there is often a need for professional communicators and a properly-designed communications strategy.”
The Toolkit can be downloaded here as a PDF (7.6MB):
With best wishes, Sandra Hails, Ramsar Secretariat
CEPA Programme Officer
Ramsar Convention Secretariat
Rue Mauverney 28, 1196 Gland, Switzerland
Tel: +41 22 9990176
Fax: +41 22 9990169