Wetlands are land areas that are saturated or flooded with water either permanently or seasonally. Inland wetlands include marshes, ponds, lakes, fens, rivers, floodplains, and swamps.
Coastal wetlands include saltwater marshes, estuaries, mangroves, lagoons and even coral reefs. Fish ponds, rice paddies, and saltpans are human-made wetlands.
Wetlands are rich with biodiversity and are a habitat for a dense variety of plant and animal species. Latest estimates show a global decline of biodiversity, while wetlands are disappearing three times faster than forests.
2 February each year is celebrated as World Wetlands Day to raise global awareness about the vital role of wetlands for people and our planet. ‘Wetlands and Biodiversity’ is the theme for 2020.
I also went to one of the wetlands on this 2nd Feb’2020, which is famously know as “Surajpur Wetlands.” Why here? because few weeks back I was involved in a plantation drive in this wetland and so wanted to see the state of the planted tree.
As I moved inside the gates to my utter surprise I saw a number of vehicles parked in an area where they are not suppose to, as that is the route taken by “Nilgai.”
The tree which we had planted was now squeezed between parked cars and on a day when we are suppose to be raising awareness about protecting the wetlands- cars, auto rickshaw and others were flouting the rules.
That is why in a previous article i had said we always talk about our children and grandchildren, and how climate change will affect them, but the reality is we are far too selfish to allow such thoughts to alter our actions.
Let them worry about tomorrow. We are only concerned about today.
Uttar Pradesh Forest Department in collaboration with WWF- India and supported by the Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority, is responsible for manning and development of Surajpur wetland. I hope that they will take corrective action and ensure that such things do not happen again.
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