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Municipal Governance, Capacity and Social Responsibility in Wetland Biodiversity Conservation: A demonstration in Anqing Municipality, Anhui Province

The project funded by the European Union - China Biodiversity Project aims to incorporate wetland biodiversity conservation into the routine business of The Peoples Government of Anqing Municipality (GAM) in middle Yangtze river, Anhui Province. The project will create conditions for wetland users to organize themselves to take joint actions that eliminate deleterious overall impacts on wetland biodiversity and local income generation.


Action Description:

Anqing Municipality meets the criteria of the EU-China Biodiversity Programme for a project site, where rich (wetlands) biodiversity resources are under great stress and local government has the responsibility and will, but not the knowledge or ability, to integrate biodiversity conservation into the actions of its local agencies, and to develop a sustainable balance between biodiversity conservation and sustainable livelihoods that depend on these biological resources.

Specifically, there is lack of expertise on biodiversity, best management practices and strategic planning by local government and the relevant sectors, as well as poor public awareness of biodiversity conservation. This leads to a conflict between economic development and biodiversity conservation.

This project responds to this core problem and fulfills the national policy objective of mainstreaming biodiversity conservation across sectoral agencies so that conservation and socio-economic objectives are mutually supportive.

The project aims to incorporate wetland biodiversity conservation into the routine business of The Peoples Government of Anqing Municipality (GAM) in middle and lower Yangtze river, S. W. Anhui Province. The project will create conditions for wetland users to organize themselves to take joint actions that eliminate deleterious overall impacts on wetland biodiversity and local income generation.

At the municipal level, wetland biodiversity measures will be included in the annual government work plan for all relevant sectors. While wetland biodiversity impacts will form the basis for criteria used to assess the annual performance of government agencies. At the county level, various approaches to community based integrated conservation and development will be demonstrated.

Overall outcome:

The outcome of this project is to secure the conservation and sustainable utilization of wetland biodiversity in Anqing Municipality.

Of the various wetland issues that could be addressed, the GAM has identified the following as the immediate objectives to achieve the outcome: (1) mainstreaming wetland biodiversity conservation; (2) capacity building; (3) public education and participation; (4) a demonstration of methods to achieve a balance between wetlands biodiversity conservation and sustainable livelihoods.

Output

  • Wetland biodiversity conservation is routinely considered by the municipal government.
  • Integrated wetland biodiversity management capacity of GAM and its relevant agencies is improved.
  • Public participation in wetland biodiversity management is implemented.
  • A balance between wetland biodiversity conservation and sustainable use is demonstrated.
  • Good project management, monitoring and evaluation maintained.

As the international partner in the project, Wetlands International (WI) will undertake part of the training activities under Output 2 and part of public awareness activities under Output 3, and introduce international best management practices for wetland planning and management. WI will also apply the experiences and results of the proposed project to their other projects in China. As an international organization WI will distribute successes in this project worldwide through their network of country offices.

Main achievements in 2007:

  • Conduct training needs analysis of staff of relevant municipal/county government agencies such as forestry, agriculture and environmental protection departments.
  • Develop the training plan. Prepare and print the training materials.
  • Conduct survey on the public awareness of the local people living around the wetlands.
  • Compile, publish and distribute leaflets on wetlands.
  • Establish a wetlands column in local newspaper.


Action Partners:

Funding Agency: European Commission