- Awetland is a distinct ecosystem that is flooded by water, either permanently or seasonally, where oxygen-free processes prevail.
- The primary factor that distinguishes wetlands from other land forms or water bodies is the characteristicvegetation of aquatic plants, adapted to the unique hydric soil.
- Wetlands play a number of functions, including water purification, water storage, processing of carbon and other nutrients, stabilization of shorelines, and support of plants and animals.
- Wetlands are also considered the mostbiologically diverse of all ecosystems, serving as home to a wide range of plant and animal life.
- The main wetland types areswamp, marsh, bog, and fen; sub-types mangrove forest, carr, pocosin, flood plains, mire, vernal pool sink, and many others.
- .The water in wetlands is either freshwater, brackish, or saltwater
- Wetlands can betidal (inundated by tides) or non-tidal
- The largest wetlands include the Amazon River basin, theWest Siberian Plain, the Pantanal in South America, and the Sundarbans in the Ganges-Brahmaputra
- The UNMillennium Ecosystem Assessment determined that environmental degradation is more prominent within wetland systems than any other ecosystem on Earth.
- Constructed wetlandsare used to treat municipal and industrial wastewater as well as storm water They may also play a role in water-sensitive urban design.
USES OF WETLANDS
- water storage (flood control)
- Groundwater replenishment
- Shoreline stabilization and storm protection
- Water purification
- Reservoirs of biodiversity
- Wetland products
- Cultural values
- Recreation and tourism
- Climate change mitigationand adaptation
- The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat is an international treaty for the conservation and sustainable use of wetlands.
- It is also known as the Convention on Wetlands. It is named after the city of Ramsar in Iran, where the Convention was signed in 1971.
- Every three years, representatives of the Contracting Parties meet as the Conference of the Contracting Parties (COP), the policy-making organ of the Convention which adopts decisions (Resolutions and Recommendations) to administer the work of the Convention and improve the way in which the Parties are able to implement its objectives.
WORLD WETLANDS DAY
The 2nd of February each year is World Wetlands Day, marking the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on 2 February 1971.
It was established to raise awareness about the value of wetlands for humanity and the planet, WWD was celebrated for the first time in 1997 and has grown remarkably since then.
In 2015 World Wetlands Day was celebrated in 59 countries.
What is the significance of wetlands to a cities ecosystem and sustenance. Discuss in the context of Bengaluru. (15 marks)
What are the problems grappling Bengaluru cities lakes and also suggest measures to address them? (15 marks)