Saturday February 16, 2019
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Wetlands Disappearing Faster Than Forests Due to Climate Change: Report

Authors of the report say biodiversity also is in a state of crisis. They say more than 25 percent of all wetlands plants and animals are at risk of extinction.

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A fisherman stands on his boat as he fishes at the Tisma lagoon wetland park, also designated as Ramsar Site 1141 in the Convention on Wetlands, in Tisma, Nicaragua. VOA

A new report warns that wetlands are disappearing three times faster than the world’s forests, with serious consequences for all life on earth due to climate change.

The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands is a global treaty ratified in 1971 by 170 countries to protect wetlands, which are ecosystems inundated by water, such as swamps, bogs and floodplains.

Unfortunately, the goal of this treaty is under threat. Ramsar Convention officials report about 35 percent of the world’s wetlands have been lost between 1970 and 2015.

Climate
Wetlands. Wikimedia Commons

State of crisis

Unless this situation is urgently reversed, Ramsar Convention Secretary-General Martha Roja Urrego warns the world will be in a state of crisis because wetlands are critical for all aspects of life.

“All the water that we use for consumption, irrigation and for hydro-electricity comes directly or indirectly from wetlands,” Urrego said. “Secondly, wetlands also have a main function in filtering waste and pollutants, so they act as the kidneys of the world. They filter the waste.”

Urrego says wetlands also are essential in regulating the global climate as peatlands store twice as much carbon as the world’s forests.

Amazon, Climate
This Sept. 15, 2009 file photo shows a deforested area near Novo Progresso in Brazil’s northern state of Para.. VOA

Several factors

The report finds wetland loss is driven mainly by such factors as climate change, population increase, changing consumption patterns and urbanization, particularly in coastal zones and river deltas.

Also Read: UN Agencies and Bangladesh Government Advances to Prevent Further Deforestation

Authors of the report say biodiversity also is in a state of crisis. They say more than 25 percent of all wetlands plants and animals are at risk of extinction.

Scientists say without biodiversity, there is no future for humanity, because the air people breathe, the water they drink and the food they eat ultimately rely on biodiversity in its many forms. (VOA)

Next Story

India Signs Agreement With Norway to Combat Marine Pollution

A joint Task Force on Blue Economy with government officials, researchers and experts as well as the private sector was established to develop sustainable solutions within its strategic areas, such as maritime and marine sector in addition to energy.

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A joint Task Force on Blue Economy with government officials, researchers and experts as well as the private sector was established to develop sustainable solutions within its strategic areas, such as maritime and marine sector in addition to energy. Pixabay

India’s Environment Ministry on Monday signed an agreement with the Norwegian Foreign Affairs Ministry for an initiative seeking to combat marine pollution.

This initiative will seek to support local governments in implementing sustainable waste management practices, develop systems for collecting and analysing information about sources and scope of marine pollution and improve private sector investment.

Support will also be directed towards beach clean-up efforts, awareness raising campaigns and pilot project using plastic waste as fuel substitution for coal in cement production and developing frameworks for deposit schemes.

marine pollution
This initiative will seek to support local governments in implementing sustainable waste management practices, develop systems for collecting and analysing information about sources and scope of marine pollution and improve private sector investment. Pixabay

Last month, India and Norway agreed to work more closely in this field by establishing the India-Norway Marine Pollution Initiative and the India-Norway Ocean Dialogues during the Norwegian Prime Minister’s visit to India.

Also Read: Know How Higher Intake of Sodium Can Treat Lightheadedness

A joint Task Force on Blue Economy with government officials, researchers and experts as well as the private sector was established to develop sustainable solutions within its strategic areas, such as maritime and marine sector in addition to energy.

In partnership, Norway and India will share experiences and competence, and collaborate on efforts to develop clean and healthy oceans, sustainable use of ocean resources and growth in the blue economy. (IANS)