Ramsar Small Grants Fund for Wetland Conservation and Wise Use (SGF)
Income and Allocations Report for 2009
The Conference of the Contracting Parties to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands established the Ramsar Small Grants Fund (SGF) in 1990 in order to provide assistance for wetland conservation and wise use in developing countries and countries with economies in transition. The SGF Operational Guidelines put emphasis upon the implementation of the Ramsar Strategic Plan, and thus the objective(s) of project proposals should relate to the general and operational objectives of the Strategic Plan. In addition, under the Fund, emergency assistance can be provided to Ramsar Sites which have suffered damage or are in imminent danger of damage. Countries which have signaled their intention to join the Convention may apply for preparatory assistance to support activities necessary for the designation of the first site to be included in the List of Wetlands of International Importance.
2009 Income and Allocations
In the 2009 cycle of project proposals, a total of 28 proposals were favourably evaluated by the Ramsar Secretariat and presented to the Standing Committee in October 2009, along with the Secretariat’s recommendations regarding funding priorities.
Voluntary contributions to the Small Grants Fund in the 2009 cycle include general contributions to the Fund by the governments of Republic of Korea and Mauritius. Project specific contributions have been made by the governments of Germany, Japan and Sweden and by Danone. Total contributions received were CHF 257,090.
From the funds available, a total of seven project proposals were approved for 2009 funding, totaling CHF 256,881.
More detail is shown below.
2009 SGF projects funded by the Small Grants Fund
Niger Delta - Communication, public awareness, reforestation
The Niger Delta is facing threats from increasing siltation from clearing of land leading to high levels of erosion and affecting the ecological functions. This project aims to designate new Ramsar sites, revise the national legislation on resource management, carry out activities to raise awareness of the values of the Niger Delta in Mali amongst the local community members and the wider Malian population, raise awareness and train individuals on the importance of conducting Environmental Impact Assessment. The reforestation of 15ha of land in the Diaka region will be used as a pilot/demonstration project before extending the scope of this project to other regions. This will be carried out by the project proponent, an NGO in collaboration with the Ramsar Administrative Authority.
National wetlands inventory
Morocco proposes to carry out a wetland inventory so as to fill in any gaps in knowledge and to update the information held at present in order to determine the effect of the drought that has occurred over the last thirty years. The aim of this project is (1) to contribute to better knowledge of the ecosystems in the Mediterranean region, (2) to serve as a complete information base for those responsible for the management of the wetlands in Morocco, (3) to raise awareness amongst the private sector of the values of wetlands and the resources they provide and to train those working in this specific field on what is required in order to successfully conduct a wetland inventory. This project will involve both field and desk studies conducted by GREPOM and the Morocco Administrative Authority.
REPUBLIC OF CONGO
National inventory of wetlands
Collecting additional information on wetlands in Congo is crucial for the Direction Générale de l’Environnement, the administrive authority, to develop a national strategy in terms of wetlands management and restoration. This project aims to carry out a national wetland inventory to determine the number, the size, the type and values of wetlands in Congo. The information collected will be used in the elaboration of management plans as well as to finalise the National Wetland Policy which has been in preparation since 2005 (SGA). The information collected will also be used to identify new wetlands for designation as Ramsar sites of international importance.
Removing a Ramsar site from the Montreux Record - Bañados del Este y Franja Costera
The project aims to remove the Ramsar site Bañados del Este y Franja Costera from the Montreux Record (included in 1990). This is to be accomplished through an assessment of the current conditions and those that brought the site to be in the Montreux Record, a project on Hydrological Regulation in the site and the designation of new Ramsar sites to compensate for the damages caused in this Ramsar site.
Designating new Ramsar sites - Takadul and Kuyumazar water reservoirs
Tudakul and Kuyumazar reservoirs are under threat from water extraction and unsustainable hunting and fishing. The project proposes activities to improve knowledge of the wetlands, consult with stakeholders and decision makers including holding a workshop, and prepare information materials such as handbooks for hunters, fishers, bird check-list and an educational film. At the end of the project, Tudakul and Kuyumazar reservoirs will be nominated for inclusion to the Ramsar List.
Capacity building for sustainable management of Ba Be Lake resources and biodiversity conservation
Ba Be is the largest natural lake in Vietnam and an important fishery. Unsustainable fishery practices threaten the wise use of the lake. The project will develop a report on fish diversity, current fish practices and provide a scientific basis for defining fishing quotas, establish a monitoring program, implement training courses on fish identification and good fishing practices, develop a Ba Be Lake Conservation Action Plan, and develop awareness raising materials.
Expanding Vietnam’s network of Ramsar sites
Vietnam has two Ramsar wetlands. This project seeks to designate at least two further sites to the Ramsar List. The project will focus on 4 priority sites, develop assessment reports on each wetland including GIS maps and conduct rapid field assessments. Following consultation with local stakeholders, RISs for two of these wetlands will be prepared and submitted to the Ramsar Secretariat.