Bridging Information for Wetlands and Waterbirds: Side event CMS COP 13 India

17 Feb, 2020

The IKI-BMU Wetlands Management for Biodiversity and Climate Protection project organised a side event on 17th February at CMS COP 13 India on Bridging Information for Wetlands and Waterbirds. The event brought together policy and decision makers from the South Asian region to discuss regional collaboration opportunities and mechanisms for conserving migratory waterbirds and wise use of wetlands in South Asia. The panel comprised of Ms Manju Pande, Joint Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Government of India; Dr Taej Mundkur, Sr Technical Officer, Global Office, Wetlands International; Dr Savita, PCCF (Wildlife) and Chief Wildlife Warden, Government of Himachal Pradesh; Dr Eric Wikramanayake, Director, Wildlife and Wetlands, WWF Hong Kong; Dr Ritesh Kumar, Director, Wetlands International South Asia and was moderated by Farhad Vania, GIZ India.

An Inventory, Assessment and Monitoring Framework for Indian Wetland (WIAMS) on integrated management planning of wetlands was also launched during the event.

Ms Manju Pandey spoke about MoEFCC’s ‘Wetland rejuvenation’ programme aimed at rejuvenation of selected wetlands based on integrated management plans and active stakeholder collaboration. She also spoke about designing of Ramsar site factsheets highlighting the wetland ecosystem services. While Dr Savita emphasised the need of data collection and well as scientific understanding of the trends in data, Dr Eric Wikramanayake stressed on the need for landscape-level conservation planning focusing on ecological connectivity and ecological valuation of wetland networks. Dr Taej spoke on the need for updating the information base for wetlands in South Asia to monitor their present situation while Dr Ritesh Kumar emphasised the need for regional collaboration through improved governance mechanisms and knowledge sharing amongst wetland managers.

Key discussions focused on the criticality of regional collaboration in South Asia, need for a National Centre for Wetlands, major capacity strengthening needs of wetlands managers, and how regional collaboration in South Asia can be enhanced for conservation of waterbirds and wetlands, given commonalities in flyways and wetlands management issues.

Weeklong exhibition booth at CMS COP 13

IGBP also participated in the CMS COP 13 exhibition to showcase its efforts in managing habitats for migratory species ranging from the Himalayas to the coasts in the four pilot Ramsar sites in India under the wetlands project as well as earlier sites under the Coastal and Marine Protected Areas project. Dr Christiane Paulus, (Directorate-General N, Nature Conservation and Sustainable Use of Natural Resources, Federal Ministry for Environment, Nature Conservation and Nuclear Safety) also visited the booth.

The exhibition saw participation of various agencies such as CMS, non-government organisations such as WWF, Birdlife International, Bombay Natural History Society and forest departments of various states of India.