At least two more will be added to nine
The Ramsar Convention Secretariat has approved two applications from Belarus for inclusion of protected areas in its List of Wetlands of International Importance
By Tatiana Grigorova
Morochno and Duleby-Zaozerie islands are to join nine other wetland areas listed with the Ramsar Convention, with Stary Zhaden also put forward for consideration. Tatiana Trofimovich, of the Land and Landscape Department at the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Protection, tells us that members must create at least one Ramsar site, which must comply with complex criteria. Once included on the List of Wetlands of International Importance, information on the site is contained in a database at the International Bureau for the Conservation of Wetlands, and is regularly updated.
At present, nine Ramsar sites are protected in Belarus: Berezinsky Biosphere Reserve; Europe’s largest lowland marshes — Sporovskoe and Zvanets; the large and unusual upland marshes of Belarusian Poozerie Yelnya and Osveiskoye; the transitory marshes of Polesie’s lowland Olmany Wetlands; and the marshes, forests and grasslands of the high-water bed of the Pripyat River — Srednyaya Pripyat, Kotra and Prostyr.
The Ramsar Convention, or the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance (especially regarding the habitat of waterfowl) was adopted in February 1971 in the Iranian city of Ramsar. It is the first global international treaty entirely devoted to one type of ecosystem and is supported by 160 countries. Belarus joined in 1990.