Ramsar COP 11 Opens with Focus on Tourism
6 July 2012: The 11th meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 11) to the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (Ramsar Convention) opened on 6 July 2012, in Bucharest, Romania, and will continue until 13 July on the theme “Wetlands: Home and Destination” to highlight the tourism and recreation opportunities provided by wetlands.
COP 11 delegates will assess implementation of the Ramsar Convention and discuss, inter alia: sustainable use of wetlands; knowledge and best practices on technical issues; and work by Member States and the Secretariat for the next triennium.
During the opening ceremony, Ovidiu Silaghi, Minister of Transport and Infrastructure, Romania, stressed the need to balance economic and infrastructure growth with development paths that permit nature to flourish, urging Parties to work together to secure wetlands to preserve biodiversity, diminish the effects of climate change and secure livelihoods for local communities. Anada Tiéga, Secretary General, Ramsar Convention, noted that the Convention addresses several key issues discussed at the UN Conference on Sustainable Development (UNCSD, or Rio+20), including: sustainable tourism; climate change; sustainable agriculture; water and sanitation; and biodiversity.