Ramsar sites

The Convention on Wetlands, called the Ramsar Convention, is an intergovernmental treaty that provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. 

Lough Neagh The Ramsar convention covers all aspects of wetland conservation and wise use, recognising wetlands as ecosystems that are extremely important for biodiversity conservation in general and for the well-being of human communities.

The Convention was adopted in the Iranian city of Ramsar in 1971 and came into force in 1975. Since then, almost 90% of UN member states, from all the world’s geographic regions, have acceded to become “Contracting Parties”. The RAMSAR website can be found at the following link: 

Governments which join the Convention undertake to respect four main obligations:

  • to designate at least one wetland for inclusion in the List of Wetlands of International Importance
  • to promote the wise use of wetlands in their territory
  • to consult with each other about implementing obligations arising from the Convention especially, but not exclusively, in the case of a shared wetland or water system
  • to create wetland reserves

You can find details, guidance and literature on RAMSAR sites within Northern Ireland by following the link below:

Related to Ramsar sites

Most recent consultations

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