World Wetlands Day occurs annually on February 2nd, marking the date of the adoption of the Convention on Wetlands on February 2, 1971.
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. Each year, government agencies, non-governmental organizations, and groups of citizens at all levels of the community have taken advantage of the opportunity to undertake actions aimed at raising public awareness of wetland values and benefits. Some of these benefits include biologically diverse ecosystems that provide habitat for many species, serve as buffers on the coast against storms and flooding, and naturally filter water by breaking down or transforming harmful pollutants.
Wetlands can be vulnerable to climate change, being impacted by changes in temperature, rainfall, sea level rise and extreme events. Wetlands can also play an important role in our approach to climate change mitigation and adaptation, through capturing and storing carbon to reduce atmospheric greenhouse gases and providing resilience to hazards such as flooding, storm surge and sea level rise.
Wetlands and Climate Change, the theme to celebrate World Wetlands Day in 2019, draws attention to "the vital role of wetlands as a natural solution to cope with climate change".