Today, progressive humanity celebrates World Wetlands Day. It was on February 2, 1971, that the Convention on Wetlands (Ramsar Convention) was signed in the Iranian city of Ramsar. The Convention aims to protect wetlands of international importance as habitats for waterfowl.
The date of signing of the Ramsar Convention has been celebrated since 1997 by holding various environmental campaigns, educational and training events.
Turkmenistan became a party to the Ramsar Convention in 2009. In the same year, a unique territory was included in the Ramsar list – Turkmenbashy Bay in the Turkmen Caspian Sea, which received the status of a particularly valuable wetland site of international importance.
For Turkmenistan, the Ramsar Convention serves as the basis for national action and international cooperation in order to conserve the resources of wetland natural complexes and their components.
According to the convention, wetlands are defined as “areas of marshes, fen, peatlands or bodies of water – natural or artificial, permanent or temporary, standing or flowing, fresh, brackish or saline, including marine areas the depth of which at low tide does not exceed six meters”. Assessment, inventory and mapping of wetlands in Turkmenistan is carried out regularly and organized at the state level.
The theme of World Day 2024 is “Wetlands and Human Well-Being”. A recent expedition along the Turkmen coast of the Caspian Sea to assess and map wetlands was also dedicated to this motto. The expedition was held under the auspices of the Ramsar Convention, with the participation of Turkmen environmental scientists. We have already written about the preliminary results of the expedition here.
According to Turkmen experts, such water bodies of the country as Turkmen aylagy, Altyn Asyr, Ulyshor (Kattashor) – Yeraji, Gyzylburun-Soltandag, Kelif-Zeyit, Ekerem-Esenguly, Mollakurban, Hanhovuz, Saryyazy, can apply for recognition as “Ramsar territories”. Sarygamysh, Soltansanjar-Duyeboyun, lake “Altyn Köl” as an urban wetland.
World Wetlands Day is intended to draw public attention to the outstanding role of these water bodies in natural processes and the life of the human community, their vulnerability and the importance of their wise use.
By tradition, in Turkmenistan, meetings of scientists and nature lovers, conferences, lectures and seminars, excursions, creative competitions and other events are also timed to coincide with this important environmental date.