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Restoring the abundance of Senegal’s Ndiael Special Reserve for people and nature

The Ndiael Reserve in Senegal is an oasis of desert wetlands that is internationally recognised for its outstanding nature. Like the birds and the fish here, human living patterns of fishing and subsistence agriculture have been a part of these wetlands for generations. To address the growing competition for land and water that is threatening this important ecosystem, we are bringing back water to the wetlands.

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Ensuring sustainable peatlands & mangroves in Indonesia

To counter the destruction of mangroves and unsustainable oil palm expansion in Indonesia’s peatlands, we work with the government to improve policies and spatial planning. We also engage with the palm oil industry to promote best management practices in peatlands and ensure the participation of local communities. At the field level, we work with local partners and communities to restore peatlands and mangroves, and improve the livelihoodsof people through Bio-rights micro-credit financing that promotes conservation.

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Sustainable development and land planning in the Parana Delta

The Parana Delta wetlands in Argentina are under pressure from the extraction of natural resources, infrastructure development, large-scale livestock farming and agriculture. This is threatening the wetlands ecosystem and traditional livelihoods that rely on island cattle-raising, bee-keeping and artisanal fishing. To overcome these challenges, we are working with strategic partners to develop sustainable solutions that rely on a scientific knowledge base and best management practices.

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A Biodiversity Action Plan for the footprint of Shell in Brunei

The rarely visited country of Brunei Darussalam is a green gem on the rapidly deforesting island of Borneo. Much of Brunei is still covered in peat swamp or mangrove forest, which is in stark contrast to the situation in other countries within the region. These forests are rich with species of plants and animals, but face threats due to development, peat drainage and fires.

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Conserving and restoring wetlands in the Niger Delta

The Niger Delta in Nigeria is the largest wetland in Africa and the third largest mangrove forest in the world. The region is known for its richness in biodiversity as well as its oil and gas resources. Wetland ecosystems play a critical role in supporting the livelihoods of millions of people in the delta. At the same time they are being degraded by unsustainable practices and a legacy of pollution and oil spills. In the delta we are bringing new perspectives to the fields of biodiversity conversation and sustainable development, putting the conservation and restoration of wetlands at the centre of achieving both livelihood and biodiversity improvements.

While this work happens under our partnership with Shell, we are not directly involved in the cleanup of oil pollution, but include the oil industry as an important stakeholder for our new ways of planning development, and improving the condition of wetlands and water resources to benefit both biodiversity and human well-being.

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From the Arctic to Africa: Protecting Waterbirds and Wetlands

Along the migratory flyway between the Northwest Russian Arctic and West Africa, we are protecting wetlands and waterbirds by developingregional long-term wetland conservation and wise-use strategies. Our goal is to bring together people in the countries across the flyway in Africa, the EU and Russia through networking tools for wetland managers and the development of local conservation action and monitoring.

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Building resilience to disasters in the Mahanadi delta and Kosi-Gandak floodplains, India

In the Mahanadi River delta and Kosi-Gandak floodplains we restore wetlands and improve water management to reduce the risk of disasters. With our partners we enhance the ability of vulnerable communities to adapt to climate change and create more secure and sustainable livelihoods. This provides a safer environment from floods and improves the capacity of these communities to bounce back if they do occur.

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Reducing the risk of floods and landslides in the Philippines

Population pressures and the over- and misuse of natural resources has resulted in widespread ecosystem degradation and led to the increased risk of (elongated) floods and landslides. In four sites in the Philippines, both urban and rural, we are working to reduce the risk of these water-related disasters.

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Strengthening Coastal Resilience for Communities in Nusa Tenggara Timur, Indonesia

We work to reduce the impacts of frequent disasters on vulnerable communities in Nusa Tenggara Timur, utilising innovate approaches to improve water management, sustainable livelihoods, ecosystem restoration, disaster risk reduction and the adaptive capacity of local communities. Through our Bio-rights microcredit scheme we improve the livelihoods of communities that restore their ecosystems by, for example, the planting of mangroves and other productive trees.

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Mangrove restoration

Wetlands International aims to reverse the rapid loss of mangrove forests along working towards the achievement of sustainable uses of mangroves. On this page you can find an overview of the current and past mangrove restoration activities of Wetlands International in different parts of the world, which provides you with our best practices and lessons learned.

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Conserving and restoring the marshes of Southern Iraq

The giant Majnoon Oil Field in Southern Iraq overlaps with the country’s most important wetland area: the Mesopotamian Marshlands. These wetlands were severely damaged by past drainage and warfare. Water availability continues to be a constraint for both for marshland restoration and the oil industry in this dry country. Under our collaborative partnership, we are assisting Shell to minimise the negative impacts of oil and gas development on the biodiversity of the marshes and the ecosystem services they provide. This is an opportunity to restore these iconic wetlands and the livelihoods they support.

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Restoring peatlands in Russia

Many peatlands in Russia were drained for agriculture, forestry and peat mining in the past and then left abandoned. Now they are subject to wind and water erosion, major fires and cause large amounts of carbon dioxide emissions. Given the significant economic, environmental and social impacts of these degraded peatlands, Wetlands International has recently initiated the restoration project of Russia's degraded peatlands.

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Reducing the impacts of oil sands mining

Canada's oil sands (also called tar sands) are one of the largest oil deposits on earth. Mining destroys the peat marshes covering these deposits, and alters the water flows within a much wider area. Oil sands oil is controversial due to these impacts and the fact that higher greenhouse gas emissions are produced from this form of extraction than from conventional sources of oil. Wetlands International is exploring activities with Shell to limit impacts and enable restoration once mining has ended. 

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Arctic wetlands: reducing the impact of the oil and gas sector

Wetlands are the dominant ecosystem in the onshore Arctic and provide valuable services to biodiversity and communities, both local and well beyond. Wetlands in the Arctic region are fragile and recovery from disturbance is slow. The impact of a new road in the permafrost marshes may impact a much wider area for decades to come. What's more: Arctic wetlands are not well defined or understood. Wetlands International works with partners such as Shell to better understand the functions and sensitivities of Arctic wetlands, in order to improve decision-making to minimise the impacts of the oil and gas sector on onshore and coastal wetlands.

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Sustainable shrimp production

Wetlands International works with businesses and the Government of Indonesia to introduce certification of sustainable shrimp farms. This work with the private sector supports the 'silvofishery concept' that combines the replanting of mangroves near and inside shrimp and fish ponds. This is a sustainable alternative for the rigid clearing of coastal mangrove forests for aquaculture.

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Saving water for the Mujib Reserve, Jordan

Together with the Royal Society for Conservation of Nature (RSCN) we worked in Jordan to reduce the impact of the dam upstream on the Mujib reserve, involve the local population in agricultural activities to save water and preserve water quality, and make sure that the Mujib reserve water needs are fulfilled in water management plans and decisions of the government.

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Water for all in the Ichkeul Basin, Tunisia

By setting up a dialogue between the different demanders of water, we built a consensus that assured the access to water of all (farmers, dams, etc.) as well as preserves the wetlands and biodiversity of the Ichkeul Basin in Tunisia on the long term. This work was done with our local partner INAT, the Institut National Agronomique.

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Improving the water quality of the Sebou River, Morocco

The Sebou River in Morocco suffers from serious pollution problems. To successfully push for control of urban pollution, we developed a monitoring & evaluation system for surface water quality.

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Towards mangrove conservation in Guinea Bissau

Wetlands International worked in West African Guinea Bissau to restore traditional rice field (or bolanha) in mangrove areas. We enabled the building of dikes and channels to restore the hydrology for rice farming. This contributes strongly to mangrove conservation, as no new mangrove areas need to be cleared for conversion into rice fields.

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Managing water with communities in the Mahanadi Delta, India

In the Mahandi Delta, Orissa, India, we word to reduce flood risks by managing and  restoring wetlands, as areas were excsessive water can be stored.

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Solving water conflicts on the foot of the Kilimanjaro, Kenya

From 2005 till 2010, Wetlands International worked with our partner the African Wildlife Foundation (AWF) in Kenya with the communities in the Kimana wetlands to improve water use. We helped to organise that the water needs of all, including three Masaai tribes, farmers and widlife for the National Parks, are balanced.

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Restoring the high mountain peatlands of Ruoergai, China

Drainage, Yak and sheep overgrazing, and erosion severely damage the high altitude peatlands of the Ruoergai, located on the Tibetan Plateau in China. Working with communities and the government we diminish the grazing pressure, block erosion gullies, re-seed grassland and much more. The goal is to give the marshes their important natural functions back and improve the inhabitants well-being.

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Restoring abandoned shrimp ponds in Indonesia

Abandoned shrimp ponds in Java, Indonesia are a threat to local populations’ health and make the coastal areas vulnerable to strong winds, tidal floods, salt water intrusion and abrasion. In Banten Bay and Pemalang we show how practical fighting poverty and improving family income can go hand in hand with restoring degraded wetlands, such as these abandoned shrimp ponds. Our approach has strongly improved the food security and health of the communities we worked with.

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For a healthy Inner Niger Delta, Mali

The Inner Niger Delta is a lifeline for one and a half million people, whose flooding provide fish, fodder for their cattle and water for rice production. This inland delta is also home to millions of waterbirds, that migrate to this rich environment, as well as hippos and many other species. We work with communities and Malinese government to restore the flood forest, reduce the people's poverty and prevent the negative impacts of dams and climate change on the delta. 

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Ecological Mangrove Restoration in Thailand

Wetlands International promotes Ecological Mangrove Restoration; an innovative technique of restoring degraded mangrove forests by only restoring the hydrology to its natural state. Compared to seedling planting projects, this approach is significantly cheaper and creates a mangrove forest with more different species of mangroves and other flora and fauna. Krabi Estuary, a Ramsar Site of International Importance, located in Southwest of Thailand, was selected to demonstrate the approach. 

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Saving West Africa's mangroves: regional policy & local practices

In the six countries of Mauritania, Cabo Verde, Senegal, The Gambia, Guinea Chonakry and Sierra Leone we worked with governments and local communities on two strategies: 1. Bind all governments to conservation policies and action, and 2. Introduce sustainable production techniques that diminish the cutting of mangroves.

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Sustaining mangroves with communities in Sedili Kecil, Johor, Malaysia

In Sedili Kecil, Johor, Malaysia, we aim to raise awareness on the importance of the conservation of mangrove forests among local communities. We also encourage their involvement in rehabilitating mangroves and strengthening their capacity to implement techniques for sustainable use and monitor the mangroves.

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Restoration of coastal hydrology at Tanjung Piai, Malaysia

Wetlands International Project looked into the problems with erosion in Tanjung Piai which was designated as a Ramsar site in 2003. The coastal mangroves are an important landmark of Malaysia: the most southern tip of the Asian Continent.

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Conservation of Palau Kukup Mangrove Island, Johor, Malaysia

In Johor, Malaysia, Wetlands International promotes the conservation and wise use of Palau Kukup Mangrove Island among the local community and visitors to Kukup wetlands.

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Green Coast - the Tsunami Response

Through Green Coast we restored thousands of hectares of coast that were damaged by the Tsunami. Green Coast adopted a unique approach: restoration & management of coastal ecosystems, such as mangroves, sand dunes and coral reefs through a community-led approach. This improved the biodiversity and economic well-being of hundreds of coastal communities in five countries: India, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Malaysia and Indonesia.

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Linking Mangrove Conservation to Local Livelihood Improvement in South-East Johor

Mangroves worldwide provide countless benefits to mankind, yet they are constantly under threat from land conversion and development activities. The loss of mangroves often results in devastating effects on coastal communities who rely on these habitats for their survival, such as those on the Johor coast. 

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Dragonfly study

Dragonfly are interesting insects that resemble minature airplanes and are commonly found in wetland areas. They are sensitive to environmental conditions and this makes them great indicators of ecosystem health. Not much is known about these remarkable creatures as they are very much understudied.  Read more ...

NAHRIM-Constructed wetlands

Rehabilitation of Wetland Cell and Replanting of Wetland Plant at Tasik NAHRIM (National Hydraulic Research Institute of Malaysia)

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Peat Fish Study

A Peat Fish Study has been done at the Ayer Hitam Forest Reserve in the state of Johor. Two surveys were done during which a number of species have been identified including the endangered Betta Persephone.

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Bringing wetland information into decision making of the oil & gas sector

Activities by the oil and gas sector can often threaten wetlands, such as in the Arctic or oil sands of Alberta, Canada. Shell and Wetlands International have developed a software tool called WPIAT (the Wetlands Pre-Impact Assessment Tool), which can help improve the understanding of how development affects wetlands, including its impact on biodiversity and people who depend on wetlands for food and work.

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Ayer Hitam Peat Swamp Forest – The Last Black Jewel of West Johor

Ayer Hitam Peat Swamp Forest is the last remaining peatswamp forest in the state of Johor, Malaysia. Wetlands Inernational is working together with the State Government to protect and conserve the area.

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Inclusive nature management in Rio Paz - Guatemala & El Salvador

In the lower basin of Rio Paz we worked to protect the river  and mangrove forests together with communties, the governments and other involved actors. Together we developed management and restoration actions for the conservation of the lower basin, meanwhile improving the well-being of the communities depending on it, on the basis of joined management through  Rio Paz Participative Environmental Management Plan (PEMP).

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Wetlands, human health and food security in Pacific Islands

The overall goal of this project is development and donor agencies have policies and practices that fully recognise the interrelationships between wetlands, and human health and food security.

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Maintaining Wetlands and Livelihoods in the Paraná Delta, Argentina (La Plata basin)

This project aims to fight the current degradation of the Parana Delta wetlands by influencing the “Strategic Integral Plan for the Conservation and Sustainable Use of the Parana Delta” (PIECAS) and other policy processes, contributing to the implementation of an Integrated Management of Wetland Resources approach, as a basis for food and water security; and for new livelihood strategies that will support sustainable economic development.

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Mediterranean Wetlands for Water and People

Building civil society's capacities to dialogue with governments about improved wetland management represents the potential value added of this project. This project promoted exchange of experiences between Mediterranean countries on the issues of participatory and integrated water management and environmental security.

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Conservation du Lamantin ouest africain (Trichechus Senegalensis)

Entre 2004 et 2007,Wetlands International Afrique s’est intéressée au statut et valeur de cette espèce dans son aire de répartition. Cela a abouti, dans la première phase à la mise en place d’une stratégie régionale de conservation du lamantin. De 2008 à 2011, l’objectif visé est essentiellement de conserver le Lamantin ouest africain et ses habitats, en se basant sur des données scientifiques les plus fiables, et en tenant compte de l’environnement, des caractères socioéconomiques et culturels de son aire de répartition.

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Initiative mangrove en Afrique de l'Ouest

L’Initiative mangrove en Afrique de l'Ouest (IMAO) cherche à améliorer le bien-être et la sécurité des communautés qui dépendent de la mangrove de la Mauritanie à la Sierra Léone. Il s'agit d'un partenariat entre l'Union Interanationale pour la Conservation de la Nature (UICN) et Wetlands International soutenu par la Fondation MAVA de Suisse.

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Case Study of the Inner Niger Delta (WETwin)

 The overall objective of the WETwin is to enhance the role of wetlands in basin-scale integrated water resources management (IWRM), with the aim of improving the community service functions while conserving good ecological status. Full title: Enhancing the role of wetlands in integrated water resources management for twinned river basins in EU, Africa and South-America in support of EU Water Initiatives.

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Saving the Wular Lake, Kashmir while fighting flood and drought risks downstream

This project focuses on Wular Lake, one of the largest fresh water lakes in Asia. Rapid degradation of Wular Lake has an enormous impact on community health and livelihoods. This prompted the state government to contract Wetlands International South Asia and her partners to develop an integrated management plan for restoration of the lake and its catchment.

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Follow the Bird

The Follow the Bird! project ran from 2008 to 2010 and demonstrated the vital importance of a network of good quality wetlands along migratory bird flyways and the link of these wetlands to the livelihoods of people.

The ambassadors of the project were birds equipped with satellite-transmitters. The migration routes of ten Purple Herons were followed on the Internet at Follow the Bird!

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Towards integrating wetland biodiversity conservation with water and agricultural management in Ukraine. A pilot project in the South Bug River Basin

The goal of this project is to develop the foundations for integrating wetland biodiversity conservation into water related sectoral policies in Ukraine based on ecological network development and civil society engagement in a pilot project in the South Bug River Basin.

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Developing a Practical Guide on Coastal Mangrove Rehabilitation

The guidebook will provide useful techniques and lessons learned from the current mangrove replanting sites in Malaysia and in neighbouring countries for local communities in mangrove rehabilitation projects.

 

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Creating Marine Protected Areas in Sierra Leone

We work in Sierra Leone to support its government to sustainably manage its marine and coastal resources and biodiversity conservation. We focus on the establishment of two Marine Protected Areas in the country.

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Wetlands and Poverty Reduction in Hengshui Lake

Hengshui Lake is a vitally important oasis ecosystem in the harsh dry central North China Plain. The lake is a central component of the Hengshui Lake Nature Reserve. The lake itself has been a central part of the local economy, with fishing and farming the predominate activities. However, slowly the lake’s resources are diminishing and many of the local people live in poverty. This project aimed to investigate the possibility of alternative livelihood development within the Nature Reserve to aid conservation and poverty alleviation.

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Status of Waterbirds in Asia: Results of the Asian Waterbird Census 1987-2007

The Asian Waterbird Census (AWC), conducted each year in January, is a waterbird and wetland-monitoring programme initiated in 1987 within the framework of the International Waterbird Census. This report summarises the results of the AWC from 1987 to 2007, comprising counts at 6,705 sites in 27 countries.

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