The Ecosystem Alliance has recently dwelt on the issue of ''Adaptation to ecosystem based climate change'' through a three-day workshop (10th to 12th December 2013) in Cotonou, capital of Benin. The workshop mobilized partners from Wetlands International, IUCN and Both Ends.
Wetlands International Africa (WIA) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), on 27th November 2013 in Dakar, jointly held a side event on the theme ''Taking Steps to Establish a Training Course on Mangrove Ecosystems for the West Africa Region''. It was in margin of the Regional Coastal and Marine Forum held in the Senegalese capital from 25th to 29th November at Hotel Méridien King Fahd Palace former President.
At the request of the Department of National Parks (DPN) in Senegal and with funding of Wetlands International Africa (WIA) acquired from the "Arctic to Africa" project and others partners, profound ditching works have helped to clean and recover almost 1,000 hectares of land and space that were polluted for several years by aquatic plants in the National Park of Djoudj. This is a godsend for birds as they recover a precious surface of their habitat and feeding ground in this protected area located in northern Senegal.
These local consultations consisted on better harmonizing the approaches for ecosystem management in this part of the Senegal River Valley. This area consists mainly of wetlands, but suffers the phenomenon of land degradation and water scarcity in the context of climate change. Meanwhile, the communities that depend on this land as well as the organizations they implemented to tackle the problem, have limited technical, financial and organizational capacity. Such insufficiencies not only prevent them to better defend their rights to access and control land, but also deprive them to control the main circuits of production, processing and marketing.
Wetlands International Africa last Saturday donated farming materials to Bondali Tenda in Foni Jarrol in the West Coast Region and Sandeng in the Kiang West in the Lower River Region, as part of efforts at boosting agricultural development in the country.The donation of the materials, which included pumping machines, watering cans, fertilizers and other farming tools, is to complement farming activities of the two communities.
After Mr. Mor Ngom, Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development, has launched the National workshop, last October 4th in Dakar, Wetlands International Africa (WIA), the organization that is spearheading the development of a National Policy Management of wetlands in Senegal (PNZH), just completed nearly a one month nationwide inside country tour, with the Department of National Parks (DPN) for information sharing and document review. The process was interactive and participatory.
Officially chaired by Mor Ngom, the Senegalese Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development, Wetlands International Africa recently held in Dakar, a National Launching Workshop on the development of the process for elaborating a National Policy for wetlands management (PNZH) which should help to promote the conservation and wise use of wetlands in Senegal. Here is a pictured summary of the official ceremony.
For the past fifteen years, Wetlands International Africa (WIA) has been investing efforts and activities on the mainland to preserve biodiversity, develop sustainable water management, adaptation to climate change as well as fighting against poverty by improving the living conditions of local populations and the development of resilient communities.
Thanks to the diligence of Wetlands International Africa, who won a tender, Senegal will finally have a national policy for the management of its wetlands (PNZH), 40 years after the country signed the Ramsar Convention (in 1971). The national workshop to launch the development of this process was held on Friday, October 4th, 2013 in Dakar, under the aegis of the Senegalese Minister of the Environment and Sustainable Development, Mor Ngom, who promised the state support to help promote the conservation and wise use of wetlands in Senegal.
The National Workshop to officially launch the Development of Senegal's National Wetlands Policy (PNZH), opens this Friday, October 4th, 2013 in Dakar. This event will be chaired by Senegal Minister of Environment and Sustainable Development Mr. Mor Ngom.
The demo project No5 CCLME recently donated a set of audio production equipments to the Kasumai Community Radio of Sao Domingos in Guinea-Bissau. The set comprised a computer, microphones, headphones and last generation MP3 recorders. This logistical support aims to strengthen the radio station, created in 1995, to renew and modernize its technical equipment. The donation follows a request formulated, in Bissau, last April to Wetlands International Africa Communications and media coordinator, by Bala Sambou the Director of Kasumai radio, who expressed the need to have new equipment.
From 16th to 21st August 2013, a team of Wetlands International Africa staff conducted training on reforestation techniques of Rhizophora for partners involved in MFS II / EA Senegal project, in the Saloum delta. As result, one hectare of mangrove has been replanted in the Sokone pilot Site.
From the 16th to 21st September 2013, Wetlands International Africa (WIA) office in Senegal hosted delegates from University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (USA). Assessment of local issues in sustainable management of natural resources and the establishment of potential areas of collaboration, in the region of the Senegal River Basin, were top in the agenda.
In a bid to give substance to the commitment of the Government of Senegal to implement a sustainable national policy of wetlands in the country, Wetlands International Africa whis has won the tender on this project, ended on thursday, September 19th 2013 in Dakar, a workshop on sharing and evaluation reports of thematic studies prior to the validation and launch of this policy that will be at the center of Senegal government's policy for the management of wetlands.
Since 2004, Wetlands International Africa initiated and coordinated a series of measures to ensure the sustainable conservation of West African manatee Trichechus senegalensis whose trade is subject to restriction, as recalled on Appendix II of the Convention on International trade in Endangered Species of wild Fauna and flora (CITES). During the 16th Conference of Parties meeting held in Bangkok (Thailand) from 3 to 14 March 2013, the West African manatee was successfully transferred to Appendix 1 of CITES.
Although the West African manatee has been successfully transferred to Appendix 1 of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES) since March 2013, there is yet evidence confirming a decline of the species which is essentially speeded by three main factors: the loss of habitat due to climate change and anthropogenic pressures, incidental capture in fishing nets, traditional hunting and poaching for commercial purpose.
Personnel in Kenya Office of Wetlands International Africa, together with other partners of the Ecosystem Alliance project such as Wildliving, Nature Kenya and ELCI among others, recently held a joint field trip, which was a first for the Alliance, followed by a workshop to identify synergies and integrate activities between partners in the Tana Delta and in Malindi.
The Wetlands International Africa office and BirdLife International have recently launched a new initiative in the coastal zone of West Africa to conserve the Vulnerable Black Crowned Crane Balearica pavonina.
The fifth edition of the Waterbird Population Estimates (WPE) prepared by Wetlands International highlights that 212 of the 871 species are precarious and generally deteriorating. Of these, 28 are critically endangered.
The ecosystem in Senegal’s Djoudj National Park (PNOD) is seriously endangered. This World Heritage Site since 1981, is dangerously threatened by the spread of typha.
The Executive Board of Wetlands International met (from 18 to 21 June), for the first time, on African soil, setting sights on the Saint-Louis region, in northern Senegal. It was an opportunity to step feet right into the Ndiael special avifauna reserve (RSAN), the National Bird Park Sanctuary (PNOD) and the Diama dam managed by SOGED Management Company.
The Ndiael basin will soon recover its erstwhile drainage network that prevailed before its actual dry state. In a bid to re-flood this avifauna reserve which state is closely linked to the Djoudj national Park, the excavation of a 28 km canal is in progress. The purpose is to connect lake “Lac de Guiers” to the big pond.
Wetlands International Africa (WIA) has, in partnership with the “Direction des Parcs Nationaux” organized one day field visit for the school children and their teachers from the seven villages around Djoudj National Park. It was an important awareness day
On 23rd November at the Intercontinental hotel in Nairobi, Wetlands International Africa- Kenya Office hosted the kick-off of the Ecosystems Alliance programme that brought together various stakeholders in the Ecosystem Alliance.
In October the following countries' National Coordinators provided waterbird counts for the African-Eurasian Waterbird Census:
In September the following countries' National Coordinators provided waterbird counts for the African-Eurasian Waterbird Census:
At the Ramsar Cop11, Wetlands International launched the new Waterbird Population Estimates online tool. The new online tool provides universal access to all five Waterbird Population Estimates editions as well as the Conservation Status Review editions produced for the African-Eurasian Waterbird Agreement, as part of Wetlands International’s continuing commitment to supporting the Ramsar Convention and all those concerned with wetland and waterbird conservation and wise use.
As part of a collaborative framework to support the monitoring of waterbirds and the conservation of wetlands in Mediterranean region, involving various organisations (French Ministry of Ecology, MAVA Foundation, ONCFS and Tour du Valat), Anne-Laure Brochet has joined the Tour du Valat in August 2012 as a project leader.
The goal of this project is to contribute to the reinforcement of the IWC scheme in Mediterranean region (especially in North Africa), in support of the work initiated by Wetlands International, which focuses on improving data quality and management. Anne-Laure Brochet will focus on building and maintaining links between the IWC and other existing projects for the monitoring and conservation of waterbirds and wetland in Mediterranean region.
This article "Issues in the Inner Niger Delta: Interview with Bakary Kone, Director of Wetlands International Mali Office" is published in the book 'The Ecosystem Promise' by Meindert Brouwer.
In August the following countries' National Coordinators provided waterbird counts for the African-Eurasian Waterbird Census:
Wetlands International and the African Institute for Capacity Development (AICAD) are pleased to announce the second workshop on Community and Ecosystem Base Climate Change Adaptation to be held from 12th - 17th March 2012 at AICAD Headquarters, Nairobi, Kenya.
Durban, South Africa - The South Africa Minister of Agriculture Forestry and Fisheries, Mrs. Tina Joemat - Pettersson hosted a forum at which she called on the 500 representatives of leading agricultural institutions to act urgently on agriculture. She explains that there was no time left for discussions and inaction but urged everyone to focus on a common message, bury divisions and stand together on behalf of the rural population.
Durban, South Africa - Wetlands International will be present at the upcoming climate talks in Durban (28 November – 9 December). This global NGO will show the important role that wetlands can play to adapt to climate change, with specific attention for wetlands in the dry and vulnerable parts of Africa. Wetlands International also continues its call for incentives to conserve and restore carbon-rich wetlands peat soils under a new climate treaty.
Bergen, Norway - Wetlands International hosted a side-event to argue the case for improved protection of West African Manatee at the CMS COP 10 in Bergen Norway. Momar Sow, Wetlands International’s Manatee officer presented the organisation’s great efforts to improve the database of information available on the manatee as well as encourage community conservation efforts.
Mopti, Mali – This coming week, international parties meet in Durban, South Africa to address the world’s changing climate. As they meet, communities in Mali’s Inner Niger Delta are facing an emerging drought. West Africa’s Niger River should be at its peak, delivering water to the 1.4 million inhabitants of Mali’s Inner Niger Delta, amongst others. However, this year’s satellite images show a notably low flooding level similar to 1984 when insufficient rainfall and flooding resulted in a humanitarian and environmental crisis.
Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso - The newly produced French language version of the Flyway Training Kit was launched by representatives of Wetlands International,BirdLife International, the Ramsar and African Eurasian Waterbird Agreement(AEWA) Secretariats at the Ramsar African Regional Preparatory Meeting held in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso from 3-8 October 2011.
Download the French and English Flyway Training Kit here
Freetown, Sierra Leone - Sierra Leone’s Environmental Protection Agency has requested Wetlands International Africa’s assistance in the mitigation of tones of sea-weed that have covered its beaches in the last two months. More informations can be found in the local news here.
Wetlands International Africa is saddened to learn of the passing away of Dr. Brooks Childress, the chairman of the Flamingo Specialist group.
Wetlands International is very concerned about the renewed plans by the Tanzanian government to mine for soda ash in Lake Natron.
Freetown, Sierra Leone - Sierra Leone’s Minister for fisheries, Hon. Dr. Soccoh Kabia, recently received Wetlands International’s Africa’s project team to his Freetown office located at the Yuyi Building. “We are always willing to work and support you,” the minister enthusiastically declared as he welcomed the group.
Nairobi, Kenya - Wetlands International and the African Institute for Capacity Development (AICAD) are pleased to announce the first Anglophone training course on Community and Ecosystem Based Climate Change Adaptation to be held from 20th – 26th March 2011 at AICAD Headquarters, Nairobi, Kenya. This course is part of a series of training courses being rolled out within the Wetlands International projects.
Cancún, Mexico - After the COP 15 of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, held in Copenhagen in December 2009, the international community was deeply disappointed at the lack of tangible progress made during this meeting. Owing to both its legal nature, in accordance with the UN system, and its lacking ambition in regard to significant reductions in greenhouse emissions or financial resources for the mitigation and adaptation of vulnerable countries, the Copenhagen document was considered disappointing. What followed was an atmosphere of suspicion and mistrust between the main negotiating groups, particularly between Annex I countries and developing ones. Therefore 2010 in Cancun had among other aims the need to restore confidence and to achieve significant progress.
Cancún, Mexico - Wetlands International has been following the meetings and progress of the Adaptation Fund Board since UNFCC CoP15. We are aware of the guidance provided through the Operational Policies and Guidelines, and we recognise and laud the progress made in setting out further guidance through the Project Level Results Framework and Baseline Guidance Document, as this will certainly provide clarity and guidance for project proponents at the country level. However, it is our wish to see the explicit recommendation of Environmental Impact Assessment and/or Strategic Environmental Assessment adopted at the 12th Meeting of the Adaptation Fund Board in Cancun, Mexico.
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia - The 3rd all African Water Week takes place at the United Nations Conference Centre, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, from 22-26 November 2010. The occasion hosted by the African Ministers’ Council on Water (AMCOW) provides a unique opportunity for taking stock of the challenges faced and progresses made across the continent towards achieving the millennium development goals and targets set on water and sanitation.
Nagoya, Japan - The rate of decline of waterbird populations has slightly decreased over the last three decades. However, 47% of the waterbird populations are still declining and only 16% are increasing. The status of waterbirds is improving mainly in North America and Europe, while it is least favourable in Asia. Especially long distance migrants appear to be vulnerable.
Nagoya, Japan (CBD) - The Niger River is a lifeline for the Sahelian countries of Mali and Niger. Depending on the rainwater in Tropical West African Country of Guinea, the river fills the large Inner Niger Delta; a seasonal flooded area for one million people and millions of migratory waterbirds. A combination of upstream dams and expected climate change impacts may mean a disaster for these biodiversity and human values.
Entebbe, Uganda - Parliamentarians from across Africa assembled along Lake Victoria’s shores in Entebbe, Uganda to exchange ideas on ecosystem and community based approaches to Climate Change Adaptation. The three day dialogue examined the status of various national climate change adaptation plans of action while identifying constraints, gaps and challenges to climate change adapting policies.
Accra, Ghana - Africa must mitigate, hold off and adapt to the effects of climate change, “for us it must not be business as usual”, says Mr. Charles Amankwa, representing the Ghana Wildlife Division (Ghana Forestry Commission) at a meeting of West African Journalists. Mr. Amankwa went on to reiterate the need to "put in place a strategy to address the emerging Climate Change Climate change issues.
Nouakchott, Mauritania - The Government of Mauritania expressed its concern for the environment and welcomed the input of civil society during the 5th West African Coastal and Marine Forum held this week in Nouakchott, Mauritania. Main concerns are the fragility of the country’s ecosystems in the face of climate change and its energy requirements. Civil society representatives, such top officials from Wetlands International, gave important inputs for the solving of these critical environmental problems.
Nouakchott, Mauritania - Six West African governments have set their signature on a document to commit them to the protection of the sub-region’s mangroves on June 30th. This Mangrove Charter also features country-specific Action Plans in which detailed activities are described to be undertaken by the same governments. The signing is a breakthrough realized by three years of work by nature organizations Wetlands International and IUCN.
Tunis, Tunisia - The shared ambition of Africa’s sustainable development has brought Wetlands International and the African Development Bank (AfDB) together. The first step of working towards this common goal has been set last week in Tunis, where high level representatives from both sides agreed to direct cooperative action on the topics of water and climate change.
Toubacouta, Senegal - The conservation of the West African manatee has received a strong impulse by the training in and implementation of monitoring techniques to government and NGO officials from six West African countries, from 20 to 25 of May in Toubacouta, Saloum Delta, Senegal. Facing challenges in knowledge on this relatively invisible marine mammal, the new monitoring and analysis techniques create the new norm and lays the foundation for a common database for the whole West African region. Watch the videos of the training
Wetlands are the home to 40% of the world’s biodiversity. With half of the world’s wetlands destroyed over the past 100 years the home, breeding and resting ground of many of the world’s species have disappeared. Today, on International Day for Biodiversity 22nd of May 2010, Wetlands International calls for the protection and restoration of the world’s wetlands for the protection of biodiversity.
“Save migratory birds in crisis – every species counts!” - is this year's central WMBD theme and aims to raise awareness about globally threatened migratory birds, with a particular focus on those birds on the very edge of extinction - the Critically Endangered. On 8-9 May 2010 thousands of people around the world will be attending World Migratory Bird Day (WMBD) events which will celebrate bird migration and highlight migratory birds in crisis.
Freetown, Sierra Leone - A task force has been created in Sierra Leone to improve the management of its coastal areas, with the aim of biodiversity conservation and effective marine and coastal resource management. Together with the baseline studies, their work will provide the necessary input to develop conservation activities that will have major impact at the national level.
Banc d'Arguin, Mauritania - The internationally important wetlands of Banc d’Arguin National Park in Mauritania can now rely on 16 new guides specialised in waterbird eco-tourism. The Wings Over Wetlands (WOW) project has trained the guides as part of its newly developed eco-tourism strategy, which includes a circuit of observation towers, tourist infrastructure and training of members of the local Imraguen community.
Watch the video
Nairobi, Kenya - Wetlands International is pleased to announce the first in a series of Training of Trainers on Ecosystem Based Climate change Adaptation, holding at AICAD, Jomo Kenyatta University, Juja, Nairobi Kenya, from the 3rd – 8th May, 2010. The course will be held in English with Simultaneous Interpretation in both English and French.
During World Wetlands Day, the spotlight is on the importance of wetlands for reducing impacts of climate change. Globally, there is a growing recognition of the key role that the protection and restoration of wetlands like marshes, peatlands, mangroves and coral reefs can play in reducing greenhouse gas emissions and adapting to its impacts. Now, this recognition has to be turned into action.
Mansoa, Guinea Bissau - Government officials have launched a new mangrove project in Guinea Bissau, which will demonstrate how better management of mangrove forests can help in reducing coastal climate change impacts. The project aims to deliver the knowledge base for the development of national policies in the fight against climate change impacts. NGO Wetlands International, which is leading the project, emphasizes that this project is an example for many coastal areas in Africa and in the rest of the world.
Dakar, Senegal - Seven countries in West Africa, Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea, Mauritania, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Cape Verde (not represented), have agreed to collaborate in the conservation of important sites for migratory birds along their coasts that receive little and/or no attention from ongoing conservation initiatives in the region. The decision was reached after a 4-day workshop (November 16-19, 2009) in Dakar Senegal, organised by BirdLife International in collaboration with Wetlands International.
Bonn, Germany 2 December 2009 - A sub-regional Training of Trainers (ToT) workshop to build wetland and waterbird management capacity and raise awareness for flyway conservation in Western and Central Africa took place in Limbe, Cameroon from 2-10 November 2009.
Interview with Chris Baker, head of programme Wetlands International
Wetlands are an important water supply for many people. For instance they can provide freshwater for drinking, regulate water availability and quality for agriculture and support important fisheries. Wetlands are also key ecosystems to combat the impacts of climate adaptation. They can mitigate extreme water flows after heavy rainfall and from glacial meltwater, and maintain water availability in periods of drought.
On Tuesday 5 November, 2009, Mr. Gerben De Jong, the newly appointed Ambassador of the Netherlands to Senegal visited Wetlands International Africa. He was accompanied by Programme Officer, Mr. Alioune Diallo.
Barcelona, Spain - Degradation of African wetlands and their organic peatsoils is one of the major sources of the continent’s growing greenhouse gas emissions. This conclusion follows from the first ever inventory of peatland carbon emissions per country, as presented by Wetlands International in cooperation with Greifswald University at this week’s UN climate talks (UN-FCCC) Barcelona.
Dakar, Senegal - Looking towards the COP15 conference to be held in Copenhagen, and under the implementation of their respective programmes on climate change, Wetlands International Africa and WWF Wamer will hold a workshop from 30 to 31 October to inform journalists about climate change with the objective to show the ecosystem impacts of climate change and to improve the media’s level of information on the stakes linked to climate justice for Africa.
Dakar, Senegal - Before the partner round-table on capacity building about climate change, Wetlands International Africa invited approximately 15 key partners active in capacity building to discuss the existing training programmes, gaps, and opportunities with respect to climate change adaptation, food security, water and health.
BARCELONA, Spain - African countries ended a boycott of meetings at U.N. climate negotiations on Tuesday, after winning promises for more in-depth talks on how much rich nations need to cut greenhouse gas emissions.
Dakar, Senegal - The Convention on Wetlands congratulates the government of the Republic of Senegal for implementing measures to ensure the successful improvement of the ecological character of Ramsar site Parc National des Oiseaux du Djoudj (Site No. 138), thereby leading to its removal from the Montreux Record of Ramsar sites under threat.
Nairobi, Kenya - Climate change is now named as the cause of the severe drought in eastern Africa. While this may be true, poor wetland management, especially unsustainable use of water resources, is the root cause of the totally drying up of normally wet areas.
Dakar, Senegal - Over thirty civil society organisations join together to avert the effects of biofuel development on food security and sovereignty in African countries. The civil society coalition on biofuels supported by Wetlands International Africa and Action Aid will be officially launched on Thursday, June 18, 2009 at Senegal's USE’s Centre de Bopp in Dakar.
Pape Diomaye THIARE
Communications and Media Coordinator
Wetlands International Africa
Phone: +221 33 869 16 81