Jay Aldous, Director of Resource Mobilization and Outreach represented the Ramsar Convention at the Third Meeting of the Partners of the Global Peatlands Initiative held in Brazzaville, Republic of Congo from 21-23 March. The Initiative is an effort by leading institutions and experts to save peatlands as the world’s largest terrestrial organic carbon stock and to prevent it being emitted into the atmosphere. Ramsar as one of the founding partners works with other organizations to improve the conservation, restoration and sustainable management of peatlands. In this way the Initiative contributes to achieving a number of Sustainable Development Goals.
During the meeting partners;
1 – shared technical knowledge, tools and approaches
2 – held a ministerial level policy dialogue on strengthening decision making, policies, legal and institutional frameworks and opportunities
3 – Agreed upon joint actions including developing an outline for the Peatlands Global Assessment.
As part of the meeting The Brazzaville declaration was signed to promote better management and conservation world’s largest tropical peatlands-Cuvette Centrale region in Congo Basin from unregulated land use and prevent its drainage and degradation. The declaration was signed jointly by Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Republic of Congo and Indonesia.
The peatlands in the Cuvette Centrale are estimated to hold about 30 billion tonnes of carbon – equivalent to more than 15 years of carbon dioxide emissions from the United States. The recognition of this peatland make the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Republic of Congo the second and third most important countries in the tropics in terms of peatland area and carbon stocks after Indonesia. The near-pristine peatlands of the Congos are globally significant and are an important source of ecological stability for the entire region and home to unique animals and plants. The Congo Basin has been inhabited for more than 50,000 years and today is home 75 million people who need it for shelter, food and fresh water.