UN General Assembly proclaims World Wetlands Day

UN General Assembly proclaims World Wetlands Day

1 September 2021

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Ambassador Carazo of Costa Rica

On 30 August 2021, the 75th session of the United Nations (UN) General Assembly adopted a resolution co-sponsored by 75 Member States proclaiming 2 February of each year, the date of adoption of the Convention on Wetlands, as World Wetlands Day observed by the UN.

The 13th Meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties to the Convention on Wetlands (COP13) in 2018 adopted a resolution, which invites the General Assembly to recognize 2 February of each year, the date of adoption of the Convention on Wetlands, as World Wetlands Day.

A core group of Contracting Parties led by Costa Rica, along with their delegations in the Permanent Missions to the United Nations in New York, stepped forward to lead the adoption of the resolution.

Introducing the text “World Wetlands Day” https://undocs.org/en/A/75/L.125 , Ambassador Carazo of Costa Rica noted that wetlands serve both people and nature, with an intrinsic value and services quantified in billions of dollars annually. 

The resolution proclaiming 2 February as World Wetlands Day comes at a critical moment amid the global biodiversity and climate change crisis to reinforce efforts to raise awareness on the importance of wetlands and galvanize actions for their conservation, restoration and sustainable use.

Since 1997, the Convention on Wetlands has marked World Wetlands Day every year with a global campaign for governments, civil society and others to raise awareness of the urgency to protect and conserve wetlands for their critical benefits for human and planetary health. The UN’s global platform would step up efforts to promote the wise use of wetlands by increasing understanding that healthy wetlands are critical to securing a resilient, nature-positive and climate-neutral world. Contributing to 75 SDG indicators, wetlands are one of the most world’s valuable ecosystem and a nature-based solution for mitigating emissions through their massive carbon storage capacities, protecting communities and ecosystems from climate impacts, and reversing biodiversity loss.

On 2 February 2022, the Convention on Wetlands and its Contracting Parties will launch the next World Wetlands Day campaign to scale wetlands conservation actions for people and planetary health.