Professor Royal C. Gardner, Chair of Ramsar’s Scientific and Technical Review Panel (STRP), was in Muscat, Sultanate of Oman, from 26 October to 1 November, providing technical support on national implementation of the Convention. The Scientific and Technical Support Officer, Marcela Bonells, assisted Professor Gardner throughout the visit.
Qurm Nature Reserve, Ramsar Site, Oman
The STRP provides scientific and technical advice to the Secretariat, Standing Committee and Contracting Parties of the Convention. Within this remit, the STRP can provide scientific and technical advice to Contracting Parties on an ad-hoc basis.
The visit had four objectives:
• To provide advice on the drafting of a National Wetland Policy or Strategy;
• To provide advice on the establishment of a National Ramsar Committee;
• To review existing environmental legislation to ensure it supports the Ramsar principles of wise use and conservation of wetlands; and
• To provide technical advice regarding the development of a national wetland inventory in Oman.
Left to right: Royal Gardner, STRP Chair; Aziza Al-Adhubi, Environmental Planner-Marine Environment Conservation Department, MECA; Marcela Bonells, Scientific and Technical Support Officer; Badar Al-Bulushi, Head of Wetland Environment, Marine Environment Conservation Department, MECA.
During the course of the week, Professor Gardner met officials from the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Affairs, Ministry of Regional Municipalities and Water Resources, Ministry of Agriculture Fisheries, and other stakeholders. He also visited the Qurm Nature Reserve, a Ramsar Site, and other wetlands.
Report by Marcela Bonells, Scientific and Technical Support Officer
Photos by Badar Al-Bulushi, Head of Wetland Environment, Marine Environment Conservation Department, Ministry of Environment and Climate Affairs (MECA).