Establishing inter-sectoral management, technical and financial structures for implementation of wetlands integrated management plans

Wetlands ecosystems are one of the most valuable natural ecosystems on the earth which their role and importance is not considered enough within national development plans. Development plans with a sectoral concentration and without an integrated perspective had an adverse impact on the wetlands while conservation activities within this atmosphere could not reduce this trend effectively in all countries including Iran. Department of Environment in cooperation with related environmental international entities (UNDP and GEF) within Conservation of Iranian wetlands project framework introduced and tested “ecosystem approach” as a participatory and holistic approach for sustainable management of wetlands around the country. Through this new approach a basis has been provided for all main stake holders to participate in management planning process and implementation of these management plans.  After adoption of these plans within the highest decision taking structures at national and provincial level for Lake Uromieh, Parishan and Shadegan wetlands, establishment of intersectoral management structures was started. These structures had three main bodies: Management committees and technical working groups including local community, NGOs and governmental authorities’ representatives as decision making and decision taking bodies and secretariats which were established in DoE as coordinator and facilitator bodies.  Decision making in such a basis, support availability of financial resources and mechanisms from each of the main stakeholders to implement their roles in management plan implementation.