- 09 February, 2017:
Government is very concerned about the effects of climate change, mainly the torrential rainfall during the past weeks that has severely affected planters and residents. It is unacceptable that people obstruct drains with their constructions, do not respect and disrupt the ecosystem.
The Minister of Agro-industry and Food Security, Mr Mahen Kumar Seeruttun, made this statement yesterday at a ceremony organised to mark World Wetlands Day at the London College, Port Louis. World Wetlands Day is celebrated on 2nd February every year. The theme for this year is: Wetlands for a Sustainable Urban Future. It highlights the important role of wetlands for sustainable urbanisation.
In his address, the Minister further underscored that Prime Minister Jugnauth is giving due consideration to the problem of water accumulation in some regions and has requested local authorities to ensure that the conditions are properly met before granting Building Permits. Mr Seeruttun emphasised the importance of wetlands that are vital for people's lives and called for each and every one to demonstrate a sense of responsibility to preserve the ecosystem.
On this score, he invited young people to report those who are polluting the environment by throwing old mattresses and refrigerators and other garbage in drains. He also spoke of the importance of planting trees across the island and dwelt on the programme embarked by his Ministry with the target of planting 100 000 plants yearly over a period of 5 years with 200 000 trees planted since 2016.
World Wetlands Day is celebrated to raise global awareness on the value and importance of wetlands to people across the world. Wetlands are the link between land and water. They reduce flooding, replenish drinking water, filter waste, provide urban green spaces and are source of livelihood.
The day also commemorates the adoption of the International Convention on Wetlands also known as the Ramsar Convention in the year 1971 in the city of Ramsar in Iran. Mauritius became a Contracting Party to the Ramsar Convention in September 2001 which also marks the designation of its very first Ramsar Site of International Importance namely the Rivulet Terre Rouge Estuary Bird Sanctuary.
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