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Good Practices and Lessons Learned in Integrating Ecosystem Conservation and Poverty Reduction Objectives in Wetlands - Policy Brief

This is the policy brief (9 pages) from the WPRP study, which was driven by two objectives: to develop a framework and methodology for assessing the outcomes of conservation-poverty reduction initiatives and to apply it to such initiatives in wetlands to understand conditions and methods that can support the integration or balancing of ecosystem conservation with poverty reduction.


The study was supported by Wetlands International (WI) and the resulting analytical framework and Lessons and Good Practices feeds into WI’s Wetlands and Poverty Reduction Project (WPRP) that seeks to emphasize the need for closer practical linkages between conservation and developmental paradigms and to generate knowledge on how this can be achieved in wetlands.

Millennium Ecosystem Assessment

Underlying these objectives is the confirmation by the Millennium Ecosystem Assessment’s (MEA)1 synthesis report to the Ramsar Convention that wetland losses appear more rapid where human populations are increasing most and where pressure for economic development is greatest, and that the projected continued loss and degradation of wetlands will result in further reduction in human well-being, especially for poorer people in less developed countries.

The MEA further emphasizes that achieving the UN Millennium Development Goals such as the eradication of
poverty, therefore, partly depends on maintaining or enhancing wetland ecosystem services, and that to do so, a cross-sectoral focus is urgently needed that emphasizes securing wetland ecosystems and their services in the context of sustainable development and improving human well-being.

Ramsar Resolution

These messages are incorporated in Ramsar Resolution IX.14 on Wetlands and Poverty Reduction whereby sound wetland management is now expected to not only cover conserving ecological integrity but also pay specific attention to the local people’s well-being (Ramsar Convention Secretariat 2005). In this context, integrated approaches that incorporate both conservation and development needs of the wetland system are expected to play a greater role.


Related Action(s):
Wetlands and Poverty Reduction

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