The Ramsar Bulletin Board, 2 May 2000
Lamentablemente, no hay versión en español de este documento
Headline story.Memo of Cooperation signed with Cartagena Convention. At ceremonies yesterday (1 May 2000) at the International Environment House in Geneva, Switzerland, Mr Delmar Blasco, Secretary General of the Convention on Wetlands, and Mr Nelson Andrade, Regional Coordinator for the United Nation Environment Programme's Caribbean Action Plan, signed a Memorandum of Cooperation intended to help Contracting Parties to the Conventions to identify and strengthen conservation of those sites of international importance that are relevant to both Conventions. The Convention for the Protection and Development of the Marine Environment of the Wider Caribbean Region, known as the Cartagena Convention from its place of adoption in Colombia in 1983, came into force in 1986 and, through its secretariat, serves to facilitate the direction and coordination of the legal implementation of the Caribbean Action Plan. The new MOC contains a 'Statement of Work' which itemizes eight areas of intended cooperation and information sharing, all intended to assist in identifying potential wetlands for nomination as Ramsar sites or as protected areas under the SPAW Protocol, avoiding duplication of efforts and maximizing joint efforts where appropriate, and mutally supporting both Conventions amongst their Parties. Here are some news and photos, and here's the text of the MOC. [2/5/00]
Headline story. Ramsar Sözlesmesi El Kitabi: Sulak Alanlar Sözlesmesi Için Rehber. That's only the beginning. Here's another: A Ramsari Egyezmény kézikönyve: Kézikönyv a vizes területekröl szóló egyezményhez. The 2nd edition of the Ramsar Manual has just been published in Turkish and Hungarian by the authorities in those countries, and most recently in Chinese as well by the Ramsar Administrative Authority in China. (The Ramsar Manual has been superseded by the events of the 7th Conference of the Parties in May 1999, and it probably won't be updated, since the Ramsar Info Pack and the Ramsar "Toolkit" of handbooks now serve the same purpose, but with proper cautions it can still be immensely valuable in countries where the Convention's 3 working languages may not be commonly spoken.)
Speaking of translations, Naoko Satoh (email@example.com) of the Kushiro International Wetlands Centre in Japan has informed us that our Economic Valuation of Wetlands book (1997) has just been published in Japanese, in a translation by former Ramsar Technical Officer Satoshi Kobayashi. In addition, the new Ramsar video has also been produced in a Russian version, produced by Wetlands International - Russia Programme, and a Chinese version by the government authorities. We're also happy to report that an Arabic version of the Ramsar Info Pack has just been completed and will be shipped out in astonishing quantities in the near future. [1/5/00]
Nick Davidson, Deputy Secretary General, is in Gdansk, Poland, 2-6 May, to participate in the final session of the Coastal - Global Oceanographic Observing System (C-GOOS), part of a large UNESCO Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission activity over the past four years. [1/5/00]
Anada Tiéga, Regional Coordinator for Africa, is in Accra, Ghana, to participate in the 5th Regional Training Course, 2-5 May, on developing National Wetlands Policies, organized by Wetlands International in collaboration with Ghana Wildlife Society and the Ghana Wildlife Department. Other participants include Mike Smart (former Ramsar DSG) on behalf of the Wetland Waterfowl Trust, Abdoulaye Ndiaye and STRP-member Aboubacar Awaïss of Wetlands International, and staff from the Ministries of 19 West and Central African countries. [1/5/00]
New on the Site:A brief history of the Convention; Conclusions of the 3rd meeting of the MedWet/Com, 1-5 April, and -- newly -- the French version. [19/4/00]
New Ramsar brochure ready. The updated Ramsar brochure, designed by Saatchi and Saatchi, with all the very latest Ramsar info for the neophyte and wetland tyro, is now available in any reasonable quantities to all practitioners and wetland theoreticians who may wish to plod through the malls handing them out to any citizens willing to receive them. The text is already available on this Web site in the three Ramsar languages, but here we have something you can fold up and put in your pocket and take away with you. If you should want some of these, please write to Ms Valerie Higgins, firstname.lastname@example.org, and specify quantity and language (English, French, Spanish).
The loss of Boris Krizan, 1948-2000. Born in 1948 in eastern Slovenia, Mr Krizan graduated in Geography and served as a secondary school teacher until 1982, when he joined the Regional Institute for Conservation of Natural and Cultural Heritage in Piran. In the 1980s he was among the first conservationists who prepared the short and long term plans for the conservation of natural heritage for the coastal region of Slovenia. He was internationally involved in conservation of natural and cultural heritage, particularly in the Mediterranean basin, and became particularly involved in conservation of the Secovlje salina, which in 1992 became the first Slovenian Ramsar Site. In 1993, he became the director of the Institute, yet continued his personal and professional active involvement in the conservation of the Salina. He died on 17th April 2000.
Delmar Blasco, Secretary General of the Ramsar Convention, writes: "Mr Krizan became a valued colleague through his participation in the Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative, notably in the framework of a project on the Secovjle salt pans carried out with the Tour du Valat, and through his leadership of the Slovenian delegation to the Second Meeting of the Mediterranean Wetlands Committee in Valencia in early 1999. Mr Krizan’s kind and warm personality, and his sense of hospitality, endeared him to all who met him. Working with him was delightful, as his sense of humour brightened the dullest of meetings. All of us in the MedWet Team and in the Ramsar Convention Bureau will remember Mr Krizan’s valuable contribution to nature conservation, and especially to the preservation of the Secovjle salt pans." [27/4/00]
Ramsar video in Russian. Irina Kamenova has informed the Bureau that the new Ramsar video has been produced in a Russian version by Wetlands International - Russia Programme. Ramsar's Alexander Belokurov affirms that the new production has been very well translated. Several Contracting Parties have requested production-quality Beta versions of the video for translation into local languages, but this seems to be the first one to see the light of day. [28/4/00]
Announcement. Free wetland education materials from Ducks Unlimited. Rick Wishart (email@example.com), Manager of Education Programmes for Ducks Unlimited Canada, sent this announcement to the Ramsar Forum on 26 April: "For your information Ducks Unlimited Canada has developed new wetland education resource materials for teachers and students. These are in pdf manual format (viewed on Acrobat Reader software which can be downloaded from the DUC site) which can be viewed, downloaded and printed free of charge. To date senior elementary and middle school components are available and a high school unit is nearing completion. For those interested, please view these materials at the following site on the DUC WebPage http://www.ducks.ca/edu/resource.html Please provide me with any feedback on how these might be improved and do inform others who may be interested in these products. Best regards, Rick Wishart PhD, Ducks Unlimited Canada, P0 Box 1160 Stonewall MB CANADA, ROC2ZO. [28/4/00]
Question.Salamanders in Japan. Dr Satoshi Kobayashi, Ramsar's Technical Officer for Asia 1991-1996, seeks advice about salamanders. Read his query here. [28/4/00]
Hint on Canada. Wetkit now online. Click on http://www.wetkit.net and type in "ramsar" as the search keyword, and see lots of good Ramsar-related things about Canada. Pauline Lynch-Stewart announces the advent of Wetkit: Tools for Working with Wetlands, a collection of practical wetland-related tools sponsored by the North American Wetlands Conservation Council (Canada) and Envirokit Solutions Inc. [28/4/00]
New Regional Coordinator for Ramsar. Mr Najam Khurshid has arrived in Switzerland to take up his appointment as our new Regional Coordinator for Asia, replacing Ms Rebecca D’Cruz, who returned to Malaysia at the end of February after a very successful 3-year tenure in the Bureau. Mr Khurshid, from Pakistan, has been with WWF-Pakistan for the past ten years and has served as Conservation Director, in addition to being in charge of the WWF-Pakistan Wetlands Programme. Here are some more details. [26/4/00]
World Water Watch launched. A new magazine has been launched to track developing issues in the global water crisis and advocate the sustainable use of this precious commodity. Entitled World Water Watch: the Magazine of the Freshwater Environment, the publication is planned for four issues a year -- the first appeared in January 2000, and the second, a special issue on the impending Second World Water Forum and Ministerial Conference in the Hague, appeared in early March. Find out more here. [25/4/00]
Progress towards "The River Basin Initiative". The Ramsar Convention Bureau, in cooperation with the Secretariat of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the support of a number of partners, is presently planning to launch what may be called "The River Basin Initiative". The initiative will aim at establishing a network to link and support activities and projects in which the principles and practice of integrated management of biodiversity, wetlands, and river basins/ catchments/ watersheds will be demonstrated. The overall objective of the initiative will be to promote and facilitate integrated management of wetlands, biodiversity and river basins worldwide. Its expected outcome in the short term will be a number of successful initiatives in at least 20 countries to achieve this objective, as well as significant progress by Contracting Parties in implementing relevant provisions of the CBD and Ramsar, enhanced partnerships in the area of integrated wetland/ biodiversity and river basin management, and the establishment of an information network to facilitate exchange of information and experience.
The secretariat of the initiative will be based at the Global Environment Centre in Malaysia, with the support of the Ramsar and the CBD secretariats. It is expected that the initiative will be formally launched on the occasion of the 5th Meeting of the Conference of the Parties to CBD, to be held in Nairobi, Kenya, on 15-26 May, 2000. For more information on the "River Basin Initiative" (title to be confirmed), write to Faizal Parish, Global Environment Centre, in Malaysia: e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org , Fax +60-3 757 7003. -- Reprinted from World Water Watch, March 2000. [25/4/00]
GEF supports major initiative on the African Eurasian Flyway. After nine months' intensive work by Wetlands International, the Global Environment Facility (GEF) has recently approved 350,000 USD (matched by a further ca. 300,000 USD) towards the preparation of a major capacity building initiative for the critical wetlands that make up the African / Eurasian Migratory Waterbird Flyway. The project submission was prepared by Wetlands International (-AEME), with support of the UNEP-GEF (one of the three implementing agencies of the GEF). Here are the details. [16/4/00]
Ramsar and World Heritage cooperation. Following on from the memorandum of cooperation between the Ramsar Bureau and UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre, signed on 14 May 1999, mutual assistance between the two Conventions has been growing ever closer. Quite a large number of World Heritage natural properties overlap with Ramsar sites (see list), as do World Heritage In Danger sites with Ramsar sites on the Montreux Record, and discussions are frequent and ongoing between Ramsar Regional Coordinators and members of IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA), the World Heritage advisory body for natural heritage. Anada Tiéga, Ramsar’s Regional Coordinator for Africa, has recently returned from a joint advisory mission with World Heritage to Ichkeul in Tunisia, and is presently in Paris, 17-20 April 2000, for the World Heritage "International Task Force Meeting on the World Heritage Action Programme for capacity building for outreach, Natural Heritage networking, education, cooperation and training (CONNECT)". Dwight Peck, Ramsar’s Web Editor, has just returned from participating in the "International Expert Meeting on the Revision of the Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention", hosted by English Heritage in Canterbury, England, 10-14 April. Plans are under way to find still more new areas of cooperation to advance to shared objectives of both Conventions. [18/4/00]
Mediterranean Wetland Committee 3, Djerba, Tunisia, 1-5 April. Resolution VII.22 of Ramsar COP7, entitled Collaborative structure for Mediterranean wetlands, approved "the establishment of the Mediterranean Wetlands Committee (MedWet/Com) within the framework of the Convention, as a forum for collaboration on wetland issues in the Mediterranean and as an advisor to the Convention in this region". MedWet/Com held its 3rd meeting in the island of Djerba in Tunisia, at the invitation of the Ramsar Administrative Authority in the country, the Directorate General of Forests. Twenty-three countries from the Mediterranean basin were present, plus other intergovernmental and non-governmental MedWet/Com members, making a total of some 100 participants. The meeting reviewed the work done during the past year under the Mediterranean Wetlands Initiative and approved a series of recommendations for action until 31 December 2001. The meeting included a Technical Session on "The cultural aspects of Mediterranean wetlands and their potential contribution to the sustainable use of wetlands resources", which approved a series of recommendations for action in this area of the social sciences, which would constitute a new area for the Convention’s work, traditionally focused on the biological aspects, and more recently the hydrological aspects, of wetlands.
The UK plans to designate the Thames Estuary. The Department of Environment, Transport and the Regions has announced: "A significant boost was given to important wetland habitats on the Thames Estuary today, with the classification of the Thames Estuary and Marshes as a Special Protection Area (SPA) for Birds and also as a Wetland of International Importance under the Ramsar Convention. The new site was formally classified by Environment Minister Chris Mullin. Covering over 5,500 hectares, the site is of special importance within Britain and the EC for the number of wildfowl and wader species which use it, both for over-wintering and as a migratory staging post. In winter the site regularly supports over 20,000 waterfowl. The wintering birds include Avocet, Ringed Plover, Dunlin and Knot. Other species who regularly visit the site include breeding common tern, wintering Bewick’s swan, hen harrier and short-eared owl. Mr Mullin said: 'This demonstrates the Government’s commitment to recognising the international importance of these wetland and ornithological sites. I am pleased to give this important site the status it deserves.'" The Ramsar Bureau looks forward to receiving the designation papers for this important site. [6/4/00]
Pablo Canevari. The Ramsar Convention Bureau was deeply saddened to learn of the untimely death of Pablo Canevari in Argentina, his home country, on 22nd March. He had recently returned to Argentina after spending three years as Technical Officer at the Convention on Migratory Species in Bonn, and had taken up the position of Director of the South America Programme of Wetlands International in Buenos Aires. His education and career reflected his passion for the protection of migratory birds and, as a researcher, teacher and project organiser, he made major advances in conservation. Through his work we had a long-standing contributor to the implementation of the Ramsar Convention in many ways, from COP4 in Montreux to COP7 in Costa Rica, as well as regional meetings in Bolivia in 1993, Panama in 1995 and Peru in 1998.
Pablo was always cheerful and funny and was able to make the people around him feel relaxed and optimistic. In his free time, which was not much, he painted beautiful water colours which have been used to illustrate many Argentine bird guides. Our thoughts and those of all his friends from Bolivia, Brasil, Colombia, Chile, Argentina and many others who have sent messages to us, are today with Maria Jose, his wife and his children Sofía, 21, Andrés, 17 and Valentina, 12, his brother Marcelo and the rest of his family. [3/4/00]
Reorganization for Wetlands International - the Americas. Wetlands International - the Americas has announced some new interim arrangements for its administration, and the press release includes a tribute to the late Pablo Canevari, who had recently returned to Buenos Aires to lead the development of Wetlands International in that region. Here is the announcement. [5/4/00]
The UK announces planned extension of Ramsar site. Valuable winter nesting and breeding sites on the coast of North-East England are to get extra protection, said Environment Minister, Chris Mullin. The Teesmouth and Cleveland Coast Special Protection Area (SPA) and Ramsar Site, which is used by more than 20,000 wintering waterfowl every year, is to be increased in size by nearly 33% (304 hectares). The site, which will now cover more than 1247 hectares, is also used by populations of Little Tern and by populations of internationally important migratory species. The whole of the Tees and Hartlepool Foreshore and Wetlands SSSI and a small part of the Durham Coast SSSI have also been included. Chris Mullin commented: "This newly expanded protected site will be a vital refuge for many species of waterfowl, both for wintering and breeding". The Ramsar Bureau looks forward to receiving this planned extension. [3/4/00]
Colloquium in honor of Cyrille de Klemm, Paris. "Biological Diversity and Environmental Law" is the subject of an international symposium sponsored by the Council of Europe and others in Paris, 30-31 March, one year after the death of renowned legal scholar and longtime legal adviser to the Ramsar Convention. Here is a brief description of the colloquium. [30/3/00]
Update.More news of the Tisza River. As András Böhm reports to the Ramsar Forum, it's not good. [30/3/00]
Announcement. 10th International Scientific Wadden Sea Symposium, "Challenges to the Wadden Sea Area", Groningen, The Netherlands 31 October - 3 November 2000. Right here. [30/3/00]
Announcement. 21st Annual Society of Wetlands Scientists Meeting. Set for Québec, August 6-12, 2000, Dr Montserrat Carbonell announces a symposium: Science and Local Communities: Strengthening Partnerships for Effective Wetland Management. [30/3/00]
Ecuador designates 4th Ramsar site. Ecuador has named the Convention's 1023rd Ramsar site, Abras de Mantequilla (22,500 hectares) in Los Ríos province. A natural permanent swampy lagoon-lake system, the wetland plays an important role in the conservation of bird fauna biodiversity by supporting 3 migratory species: Anas discours, Chordeiles minor spp. and Catharus ustulatus; 3 rare species and 8 endemic species, including Furnarious cinnamomeus, Veniliornis callonotus callonotus, Glaucidium peruanum and Turdus maculirostris. It also supports a significant population of indigenous fish and at the same time is a source of food, a spawning site and a development area for those species of fish that depend upon the wetland. However, over-exploitation of water resources combined with the introduction of tilapia for fish-farming are resulting in a dramatic decline of the populations of indigenous species, not only in Abras, but in all coastal area watercourses. An assessment of the current state of the wetland is foreseen and should serve as a basis for development of a management plan for the area. [28/3/00]
More to follow. Watch this space. Feedback and suggestions to: the Ramsar Convention Bureau, Rue Mauverney 28, CH-1196 Gland, Switzerland (tel +41 22 999 0170, fax +41 22 999 0169, e-mail ). Updated regularly by Dwight Peck, Ramsar Bureau.