World Wetlands Day (WWD) is celebrated every year on February 2nd globally. It is an ecological festival dating back to 1971 when many activists came together to reaffirm the protection and love of wetlands. It is celebrated by gathering together to raise public awareness of the value of wetlands with common people, government agencies, NGOs, non-governmental organizations, and people of the entire world. WWD marks the anniversary of the signing, on 2nd February 1971, in Ramsar, Iran, of the Convention on Wetlands of International Significance (Ramsar Convention). For those that do not know, wetlands are the small plant life habitats and species contained inside water sources that not only water bodies, but environments as a whole, bring about ecological health in abundance. The Secretary of the World Wetlands Department is originally from Gland, Switzerland, and the Ramsar Convention first attributed this appreciation to the beginning of World Wetlands Day in “the Iranian city of Ramsar on the shores of the Caspian Sea.” Since 1997, World Wetlands Day has been used to:
- Raise public awareness of wetland values and benefits.
- Promote the conservation and wise use of wetlands.
Various activities such as workshops, lectures, nature walks, sampan races, poster exhibits, video film screenings, wetland-based slide shows, art and quiz contests, painting competition, photography exhibition, neighborhood cleaning, radio and television interviews, and so on take place in several locations at the national level to commemorate this event. This day aims to celebrate the impact and positive production that wetlands have had on the planet, bringing together communities for the good of Mother Nature. This day, as wetlands play an important role not only in people but on the planet, also raises global awareness. There is no official holiday for World Wetlands Day, but businesses, schools, and government offices are open. On this day, community protectors and environmental enthusiasts all come together to share their love of nature by honoring what wetlands have done for not only us humans, but all kinds of species in this world. Wetlands are located by the sea or inland and may be seasonal, only during parts of the year, or perennial, are waterlogged. In the environment, they play a crucial role.:
- Preventing flooding by absorbing water.
- Ensuring that the soil provides a unique breeding ground for fish-feeding vegetation.
- Giving shelter to animals.
- Purifying water by removing sediment.
Over-population and development have contributed to a decline in the protection of the environment and have brought problems to these beautiful lands in general. The day is celebrated with the goal of increasing public awareness, addressing the importance of wetlands, their beneficial aspects, and encouraging their protection and use to enhance the overall level of human health, growth, and development. The day (World Wetlands Day) commemorates the anniversary of the 1971 signing of the Ramsar Convention in Ramsar city, Iran. A treaty on the protection and sustainable use of wetlands is the Convention. A theme is chosen each year to focus attention and help increase public understanding of the importance of wetlands. A variety of awareness-raising activities are organized by countries, such as: workshops, conferences, nature walks, children’s art competitions, sampan races, community clean-up days, radio and television interviews, newspaper letters, the introduction of new wetland initiatives, new Ramsar sites, and new national projects. In order to promote the protection and sustainable management of wetlands worldwide, the Ramsar Convention provides an international framework. Reports of their WWD (World Wetlands Day) activities have been posted on the Ramsar website since 1997 from about 100 countries. A map of events was launched in 2016 to help nations promote their activities and to encourage post-WWD news.