Ramsar Releases First Batch of Draft COP 11 Resolutions

20 February 2012: The Secretariat of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Convention) has announced that, following the approval by the Standing Committee of the draft resolutions for consideration by the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP 11), the Secretariat is finalizing and translating the draft resolutions into the three Convention languages (English, French and Spanish). A first tranche of the COP 11 draft resolutions have been finalized and are available on the Secretariat's website.

The available draft resolutions address: institutional hosting of the Ramsar Secretariat; regional initiatives 2013-2015 in the framework of the Ramsar Convention; partnerships and synergies with Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) and other institutions; tourism and wetlands; an integrated framework for avoiding, mitigating, and compensating for wetland losses; wetlands and energy issues; principles for the planning and management of urban and peri-urban wetlands; wetlands and health: taking an ecosystem approach; an integrated framework for linking wetland conservation and wise use with poverty eradication; and promoting responsible investment by government and the private sector to ensure the maintenance of the benefits people and nature gain from wetlands.

The draft on the synergies with MEAs would have the COP request the Secretariat to continue to cooperate closely with relevant conventions through its participation in the Joint Liaison Group of the three Rio Conventions, namely the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), and UN Convention to Combat Desertification (UNCCD), and through its work as a member of the UNEP Environment Management Group (EMG). It requests the Secretariat to remain closely involved in the work of the Biodiversity Liaison Group (BLG) established under the aegis of the CBD and to report regularly to the Standing Committee on progress achieved by this group, and to facilitate the continuing participation of the Chairperson of the Scientific and Technical Review Panel (STRP) in the work of the scientific bodies of the biodiversity-related conventions (CSAB). It also addresses collaboration with the Convention on Migratory Species (CMS), the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), the UN Environment Programme (UNEP)-World Conservation Monitoring Centre (WCMC), the UN World Tourism Organization (UNWTO), and the World Health Organization (WHO), as well as engagement in the ongoing process to establish of an Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).

The draft resolution on wetlands and energy would have the COP welcome the “Guidance for addressing the implications for wetlands of policies, plans and activities in the energy sector,” and invite contracting parties to use this guidance and identify the capacity, expertise and technical information needed for addressing the specific issues and potential impacts of the energy sector on wetlands addressed.

The remaining draft resolutions will be posted progressively as they become ready. COP 11 will take place in Bucharest, Romania, from 6-13 July 2012. [The Draft Resolutions]