World Wetlands Day February 2, 2022

On 30 August 2021, the UN General Assembly proclaimed 2 February as World Wetlands Day to raise awareness of the urgency of reversing the accelerating loss of wetlands and to promote their conservation and restoration. The day marks the date of the adoption of the "Convention on Wetlands of International Importance" held in 1971 in the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea. Adopted by 172 countries, each country joining the Convention must designate at least one wetland to be included in the List of Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar sites).
Through the designation of protected areas, the implementation of effective policies, and the sharing of knowledge, the Convention enables countries to take measures to protect their wetlands and to use them wisely.
A call to take action for wetlands is the focus of this years’ campaign, aims to raise global awareness about the vital role of wetlands for people and planet. It's an appeal to invest financial, human, and political capital to save the world’s wetlands from disappearing and to restore those we have degraded.
Photo: Obedska bara by Vladimir Dobretić
Wetlands represent biodiversity hotspots, freshwater resources, carbon sinks and source of livelihoods for people and the planet. Natural wetlands are disappearing three times faster than forests, since the 1700s 85% of wetlands are lost, 35% in the last 55 years (1970-2015). Loss of wetlands affects peoples’ wellbeing causing potential water scarcity and food insecurity, increasing exposure to flooding and extreme weather events
Recognizing the interdependence of humans and the environment as well as the ecological functions of wetlands, for wildlife habitat, nutrient cycling, and flood control, all countries sharing the Sava River Basin are contracting Parties of the Ramsar Convention.
Total area of 7 Ramsar sites in the Sava River Basin is 71,673.00 ha, comprising Cerniško Lake in Slovenia, Lonjsko Polje and Crna Mlaka in Croatia, Bardača in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Peštersko Polje, Obedska bara and Zasavica in Serbia.
Protecting the wetlands can facilitate tackling with global challenges as climate change, weather extremes, biodiversity loss and pollution. Healthy wetlands are essential to achieving the Sustainable Development Goal 6, which focuses on ensuring the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all, and its target 6.6, which seeks to protect and restore water-related ecosystems.