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Publication of Water scarcity

Challenges to the integration of wetlands into IWRM

By Lisa-Maria Rebelo a,*, Robyn Johnston b, Thomas Hein c, Gabriele Weigelhofer c,
Tom DHaeyer d, Bakary Kone e, Jan Cools f

Wetlands are too often perceived as standalone elements and are poorly integrated into river basin management. The Ramsar Convention recognizes the critical linkage between wetlands, water and river basin management; the governments that are party to the Convention have committed to conserving their wetlands within a framework of Integrated Water Resources Management (IWRM). The ‘‘Critical Path’’ approach and related guidance have been adopted by Contracting Parties of the Ramsar Convention in order to effectively integrate wetland conservation and management into river basin management planning and decision-making. However, despite international acceptance of the approach, it is not widely implemented. This paper provides one of the first case study based assessments of the Critical Path approach. The analysis of two contrasting Ramsar sites is presented in order to better understand the barriers to implementation in different development contexts. These are the Lobau wetland in Austria, where management institutions and regulatory frameworks are highly developed; and the Inner Niger Delta in Mali, where the capacity to implement IWRM is less evolved. A planning approach is proposed which involves structured and transparent methods for assessing ecosystem services and institutional capacity, and is suitable as a tool for identifying, prioritizing and negotiating trade-offs in ecosystem services and improving livelihoods. Based on the analysis, two main barriers to implementation are identified; mismatch between local and national or basin level priorities, and a lack of recognition of the ecosystem services provided by wetlands. # 2012 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

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River Talk video: European Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potočnik

CEO Jane Madgwick sits down with Janez Potočnik, European Commissioner for the Environment to discuss the EU's commitment to rivers, how river restoration can help meet the goal of good ecological status of Europe's rivers and the 1st European Riverprize. 

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La Economía de los Ecosistemas y la Biodiversidad relativa al agua y los humedales

Este reporte presenta información sobre los servicios ecosistémicos esenciales relacionados con el agua y los amplios servicios ecosistémicos de los humedales. Su objetivo es alentar un impulso adicional en la generación de políticas, el compromiso empresarial y las inversiones en la conservación, la restauración y el uso racional de los humedales.

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Integrating human health into wetland management for the Inner Niger Delta, Mali

Livelihood and water-related diseases are strongly linked to wetland management. The majority of wetland stakeholders in the Inner Niger Delta, Mali considered human health and sanitation the most important criteria of a list of challenges and water-related pressures. Yet, a methodology to integrate health risks and opportunities into wetland management plans has previously not been proposed, despite the clear links and substantial real-life challenges. In this paper, a framework is presented to do this in data-poor context structured around the process to evaluate and prioritise the appropriateness of management options to improve human health.

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The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity for Water and Wetlands

The draft report "The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity for Water and Wetlands" was released as a contribution to the 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 11) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), convening in Hyderabad, India.

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