Each year, World Wetlands Day is celebrated internationally. It commemorates the signing of the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance on 2 February 1971, in Ramsar, Iran. In 2018 the theme “Wetlands for a Sustainable Urban Future” was chosen by the Standing Committee of the Ramsar Convention to highlight the importance of wetlands for sustainable urbanization.
Around 4 billion people currently live in urban areas. This number will increase up to 66 per cent by 2050, as people will continue to move to cities in search of better employment. In addition, the world’s population is increasing by 2.4% a year, and by 2030 the number of mega-cities with more than 10 million inhabitants will have risen from 31 to 41.
During the 20th century, it is estimated that the global area of wetlands declined between 64-71% and this number continues to increase every year. In addition, the abundance of populations of freshwater species studied has also declined by an average of 76% over the past 40 years.
This infographic shows the most relevant information on urban wetlands.