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Marking World Wetlands Day: February 2nd 2017
World Wetlands Day is celebrated every year on the 2nd February, marking the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands in the Iranian city of Ramsar in 1971. Parties to the Ramsar Convention – including Ireland – commit to the wise use of wetlands and more specific measures.
The theme for World Wetlands Day 2017 is “Wetlands for Disaster Risk Reduction”.
It’s a pertinent theme for Ireland where plans to handle flood and coastal erosion risks are hotly debated.
The key message is that Wetlands play an important role in reducing the impact of extreme weather events such as storm surges floods and droughts. Intact coastal wetlands with seaweed buffers reduce the impact of storm waves.
We – that is communities, journalists and decision makers – need to better understand, protect and indeed restore these and other wetland functions. For more information, please see www.worldwetlandsday.org
World Wetlands Day Thursday February 2nd – Dublin Events
- 10:00 – Coastwatch trip to Sandymount Strand – meet at Booterstown DART Station
- 13:00 – Talk: ‘Working with Wetlands to reduce flood and erosion risk’ in The Simon Perry Building, Trinity College
- 15:00 – Photography Exhibition Launch, Dublin City Council, Civic Offices, Wood Quay. More details are available on the Dublin Bay Biosphere website.
Further details on each of these events are available by clicking on the Calendar in the sidebar of this page (Desktop Only) or contacting Karin Dubsky (contact details at end of article).
Things YOU can do:
- Be informed: set aside to learn more about the role of wetlands in flood and erosion risk reduction. There are excellent materials on the Ramsar wetland website ramsar.org, see also IUCN overview on www.iucn.org/sites/dev/files/2014-038.pdf and teacher materials on http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0022/002289/228963e.pdf
- Enter a photo competition: Enter or entice a young person (18 – 25 years old) to enter the Wetlands Youth Photo Contest, organized by the Ramsar Convention bureau. Up to 3 photos taken and uploaded between 2 Feb and 2 March 2017 in/of a wetland which has disaster risk reduction functions.
- Organise an event or activity on World Wetlands Day, or close to the day – A local flood plain or bog walk with someone who knows how it ticks. To make it extra informative download a flood or erosion map for the area from the OPW website floodmaps.ie and see where the past flood or prediction lines run. What about a coastal expedition at low tide around a bay, or holding a talk, debate, exhibition or paint in on wetlands?: Ireland has 45 designated Ramsar sites, if one is near you, check it out. There is an Irish Ramsar Wetlands poster and a wetland leaflet produced by the Irish Ramsar Wetlands Committee which can be downloaded or posted out.
Please register your event. Go to www.worldwetlandsday.org where you can complete an online form and also see the many other events planned across the world.
Article by Karin Dubsky, Coastwatch Ireland
Karin Dubsky CEPA Focal Point Ramsar Convention for Ireland. 086 8111 684 and firstname.lastname@example.org
Karin is also member of the Irish Ramsar Wetlands Committee which includes a range of expertise from different government and nongovernment bodies.