The CEPA Programme

We benefit in so many ways from wetland ecosystems but most people do not recognize wetlands’ vital value in sustaining our lives. More than a billion people around the world make their living directly from wetlands, yet some 64% of the world’s wetlands have disappeared in the last century.

To counter this alarming loss, promoting wetlands and their vital role for humanity is urgently needed. Strategic and targeted communication must be put in place.

The Convention on Wetlands' Programme on communication, capacity building, education, participation and awareness (CEPA), was adopted through Resolution XII.9 at COP12 in 2015. It superseded earlier CEPA Resolutions approved in 1999, 2002 and 2008.

The vision of the Programme is “Prevent, stop and reverse the degradation of wetlands and use them wisely”. The over-arching Goal is “People taking action for the wise use of wetlands”. 

Through Resolution XIV.8, the Contracting Parties at COP14 in 2022 agreed a new CEPA approach, and encouraged its implementation by Parties, International Organization Partners and other partners, noting that it is designed to recognize and be complementary to existing CEPA activities.

The Convention Administrative Authorities are the key implementers of the Programme. Their National Focal Points work with the country’s CEPA Focal Points, NGOs, Ramsar Regional Initiatives and other civil society organizations and wetland visitor centres.

Effective use of CEPA requires a planned systematic approach which reflects the interests of stakeholders and beneficiaries. Approaches need to be tailored to the local context, culture and traditions. Nonetheless, international experiences can guide national planners in formulating country-specific CEPA plans.

Join the CEPA Network

Interested individuals and organisations are invited to join the CEPA email list. The Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands and the CEPA network shares through this platform wide range of news, discussions, views and publications. 

To join the CEPA list please subscribe here

Some of the discussions and news shared through CEPA lists can include:

  • Educational and outreach materials
  • Inspirational CEPA stories and Actions Plans from around the world
  • Capacity building techniques