The month of June was filled with pivotal events and discussions surrounding the days of World Environment Day, the EU Green Week, and World Ocean Day, whereby Wetlands International Europe collaborated with the Wetlands International network and other partners to highlight the critical role of wetlands to help combat global challenges.
On 3 June 2021, Wetlands International Europe together with Wetlands International Offices in Brazil and Argentina organised an online event, ‘Water, Wetlands & Fires: Innovative Solutions for Green Recovery in South America’ to celebrate World Environment Day (5 June 2021) and participate in the launch of the UN Decade on Ecosystem Restoration, presented by Ms Maria Eugenia Di Paola, Environment and Sustainable Development Coordinator, UNDP (Argentina).
The event focused on the importance of innovative solutions for wetland ecosystem restoration, while giving an overview of the issues in the Paraguay-Paraná wetland system. The session offered the opportunity to exchange with the EU on the Green Deal and its implementation in the external dimension. It stressed the importance of interregional cooperation to implement innovative solutions that contribute to restore freshwater ecosystems and boost green recovery. These actions will be beneficial not only to the environment but also for communities across the Pantanal, Ibera Marshes and Paraná Delta who are facing severe consequences of the pandemic, drought, and fires.
In summing up the event, Wetlands International CEO, Jane Madgwick stated: ‘If we take water as an entry point to bring solutions, then we would really start to make progress. There’s an urgency to bring changes, and a lot of hope.’
Link to the Recording of the event
On 16 June, Wetlands International Europe, in partnership with the United Nations Environment Programme, Partnership of Environment and Disaster Risk Reduction, Partners for Resilience, United Nations Office for Disaster Risk Reduction and Partners for Resilience, organised an EDD High-Level Panel Discussion: ‘Are natural solutions fit for climate only?’
Panelists, including Wetland International South Asia Director, Dr Ritesh Kumar, shared community-based eco-DRR knowledge and discussed the need to scale up investments in nature-based solutions. During the event Ms. Mami Mizutori, head of UNDRR, launched the ‘Words into action: NBS for Disaster Risk Reduction’ a guide aiming at giving practical, how-to information on setting up and implementing nature-based solutions for disaster risk reduction and climate change adaption. (The document can be download below)
A key take-home message was:
‘Nature based solutions don’t happen naturally – we need to all work together and make it happen and scale it up.’ – Mami Mizutori, UNDRR
Link to the EDD event webpage
The recording of the discussion can be watched here
A graphic facilitator summarised the discussion in an illustration
time-lapse video of the image creation can be found here
Download the document ‘Words into action: NBS for Disaster Risk Reduction’ launched during the session