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Statement: World Wetlands Day 2024

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IT’S WORLD WETLANDS DAY! Dr. Annadel Cabanban, Country Manager of Wetlands International Philippines, has a few words to share this World Wetlands Day, 02 February 2024. Watch and download her message below.

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On behalf of Wetlands International Philippines, I would like to wish everyone a Happy World Wetlands Day this February 02, 2024!  

This year’s theme, “Wetlands and Human Wellbeing”, highlights the interconnectedness of wetlands and human life. 

Wetlands such as rivers, lakes, peatlands, marshes, mangrove forests, seagrass meadows, mudflats, and shallow coral reefs are the lifeblood of our planet. They provide us with clean water, bountiful food, protection from storms and countless other species habitats to live in.   

Wetlands even help reduce the impact of climate change by storing carbon.  

Yet these important ecosystems are vanishing at an alarming rate. In the Philippines, our wetlands are threatened by pollution, unsustainable development, overexploitation, and climate change. 

As wetlands disappear, more and more communities become vulnerable to flooding, drought, and food insecurity.   

But there is hope. We can still conserve our remaining wetlands and what has been damaged can still be rehabilitated or restored.

At Wetlands International Philippines, we are working in the Cagayan de Oro River Basin to reduce the risk of flooding. And in the north coast of Manila Bay and in Macajalar Bay, we are collaborating with local communities to replant mangrove forests using science- and community-based techniques.  

Overall, we promote the rehabilitation and restoration of wetlands as nature-based solutions to water-related issues like flooding, drought, or erosion. Nature-based solutions provide also other benefits for our well-being such as protection, sustenance, food security, natural capital for ecotourism and fisheries, and adaptation to climate change. 

On this World Wetlands Day, let us unite to celebrate the biodiversity and benefits from wetlands. Let us act together to conserve, use sustainably, and restore these ecosystems for our well-being and our children’s future.   

Thank you for joining us in this action.  Happy World Wetlands Day!