Newfoundland and Labrador – Wetland Strategy Commitment
In recognition of February 2 as World Wetlands Day, the Honourable Perry Trimper, Minister of Environment and Conservation, is acknowledging the critical role that healthy wetlands play in the overall health of our province’s natural environment.
“Healthy wetlands provide many important benefits to fish, wildlife, plants and people, and contribute to the rich natural environment that we all enjoy. As part of my mandate, I am committed to collaborating with our many stakeholders to establish a new provincial wetlands strategy, which will ensure that our wetlands are protected and allowed to thrive into the future.”
– The Honourable Perry Trimper, Minister of Environment and Conservation
The Convention on Wetlands was adopted on February 2, 1971, in the Iranian city of Ramsar. The treaty, negotiated by countries and non-governmental organizations, provides the framework for the conservation and wise use of wetlands. Canada is one of the treaty’s 169 signatories and currently has 37 designated Ramsar sites, including the Grand Codroy Estuary, on the west coast of the island.
Some of the benefits of healthy wetlands include:
- Assisting with flood control by slowing runoff rates and minimizing erosion around nearby water bodies and streams;
- Maintaining water supply levels by replenishing groundwater reservoirs;
- Removing waste, bacteria and contaminants from surface and ground water, helping to keep drinking water clean;
- Providing important habitat for fish, wildlife and plants, including for rare and endangered species;
- Producing diverse plant communities that provide nutrients to support the food chain;
- Capturing and storing carbon from the atmosphere which assists in our efforts to mitigate the effects of climate change; and
- Offering opportunities for recreational and scientific pursuits such as birdwatching and public education.
The primary purpose of a provincial wetland strategy will be to provide guidance for the conservation of wetlands in Newfoundland and Labrador while promoting sustainable economic development.
- The Provincial Government is recognizing February 2, 2016, as World Wetlands Day, and is committed to working with stakeholders to develop a Provincial Wetlands Strategy.
- World Wetlands Day marks the date in 1971 that saw the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands in Ramsar, Iran.
- Healthy wetlands promote clean drinking water, provide valuable habitat for fish, wildlife and plants and moderate the effects of climate change by capturing and storing carbon.
PHOTO: Male and Female Eiders at Table Bay, Labrador/Leslie Hamel
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