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  • Conservation

    Conservation of critical wetland ecosystems, their functions and processes is essential to ensure their integrity.The Alliance works towards securing and maintaining wetlands ecosystem services for the well-being of the communities that depend on them.
  • Livelihoods

    Millions of people in Southeast Asia depend on healthy wetlands for their Livelihoods . Wetlands provide water and food and sources of income. Poverty Reduction and income diversification for wetlands dependent communities within a framework of responsible wetlands management are key to foster human well-being in wetland areas. .
  • Governance

    Integrating wetlands conservation with income generation and poverty reduction requires Governance Systems that are inclusive and participatory, involvingGovernments, Civil Society and the Private Sector.The Alliance fosters participatory approaches that bring a diverse rang of stakeholders together and ensures that the voices of the disadvantaged and marginalised are heard
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  • Wetlands Alliance International Conference (WAIC)
  • Highlights from our work
  • Alliance key areas

The Wetlands Alliance International Conference (WAIC) was jointly organized by the Asian Institute of Technology on behalf of the Wetlands Alliance and the Ministry of Environment, Cambodia. With this conference, the Alliance expanded on its original mandate to vertically link the local with the regional and horizontally civil society, policy makers and academia. Wetlands Alliance partners from Cambodia, Myanmar and Vietnam were joined by representatives from a wide range of programs, projects and initiatives working towards sustainable management of wetlands through conservation and livelihood development for wetlands dependent communities.

The Wetlands Alliance was represented by Corin Asia, WorldFish, WWF, Cambodian Rural Development Team, local partners from Cambodia and central Vietnam, the Cambodian Fisheries Administration, the Learning Institute, FREDA and AIT. IUCN and the Ramsar Convention, USAID, the Wetlands Research Network of Mahidol University, BirdLife International and the Wildfowl & Wetlands Trust (WWT) were among the key participating organizations, with individual participants from universities in the Philippines, Bangladesh and Myanmar.

40 presentations provided insights into a wide range of wetlands management related themes, both from research and implementation perspectives, covering issues such as Wetlands Conservation, Wetlands and Livelihoods, Climate Change and Wetlands, Wetlands and Fisheries, Communities, Governance and Rights-based approaches as well as impact and environmental quality assessments.

With a opening keynote talk from the Ramsar convention, the organizers stressed the importance of extending linkages and networking within the region and encouraging Ramsar to engage beyond its immediate network of Ramsar sites within its new “Indo-Burma Regional Ramsar Initiative”, which is hosted by IUCN.

In a passionate keynote presentation, Dr. Zeb Hogan, the host of National Geographic’s “Monsterfish” referred to the disruptive infrastructure developments on the Mekong and their potential impacts on fisheries in the lower Mekong, pointing at a range of opportunities that he think should be explored to minimize the impacts of hydropower development on fish.   

Presentations clearly showed that while the drivers of wetlands degradation are known well, the importance of wetlands and their services is widely recognized and responsible agencies usually know what needs to be done to protect and sustainably manage wetlands, wetlands are still continuing to decline at alarming rates. A world-café-style round table discussion challenged the participants to tackle this issue and explore new approaches to address wetlands management and conservation in the region.

The above sketch probably reflects best the thoughts and concerns expressed by  participants during the café session: it is a doodle by one of the participants, symbolizing the idea that a future is possible in which people and fish, communities and nature can co-exist. 

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Mangroveuse01 Protection and reforestation of Mangroves +

Mangrove Rehabilitation and Restoration

in Cambodia, Myanmar, Thailand and Vietnam

CBET01Generating income for local communities+

Community-based ecotourism

in Camboida and Vietnam

SHGs01 Creating jobs through enabling small investments into enterprise creation +

Access to finance and business development

in Cambodia and Vietnam

CapBuilding02 Building skills and competencies across all stakeholder groups.  +

Capacity Building

through actionable learning

capbuilding01 Community Based Action Research +

Participatory Research

based on ethical research protocols

Policy01 local development planning and implementation +

Policy Advice and Development

for planning and implementation