PROJECT DOCUMENT 2020-2025 Conservation of Iranian Wetlands Project

Phase III of the Conservation of Iranian Wetlands Project (CIWP) builds on the successes of the previous phases of the project since 2005 during which the ecosystem-based management approach was introduced and partly implemented for several wetlands. Valuable achievements of the project during previous phases include preparation of Integrated Management Plans for wetlands and establishment of the implementation structures, strengthening the wetland related legislations, laws and capacities at national level, awareness raising of the stakeholders and the public on the values of the wetlands.
But because of the challenges inherent in multi-stakeholder ecosystem-based management for wetlands and the lack of adequate collaboration between stakeholders, the approach has not yet been effectively implemented. Thus, many wetlands are still suffering from various threats. Therefore, the main aim of the present project is to more effectively apply ecosystem-based management approach for better wetland conservation and the promotion of more sustainable livelihoods for the local population, along with identifying and practicing new approaches or complementary tools.

The strategic components selected for the implementation of the project for sustaining the conservation of the wetlands and livelihood of the surrounding population are:


1) Iran’s wetlands are better managed through mainstreaming the ecosystem approach and applying effective tools;
2) The management of land, water and biodiversity in wetland basins is sustainable and adapted to climate change, enhancing local community livelihoods and wellbeing; and
3) Iran’s wetlands are in better condition due to increased public awareness and participation, enhanced collaboration, knowledge and sharing of innovative national and international technologies and practices. These components have been derived from discussions at several workshops organized with the participation of key stakeholders, experiences from previous years and reviewing new approaches
In order to achieve these components, the focus of the project will be on mainstreaming ecosystem-based management approach for the conservation of wetlands and empowering the stakeholders engaged in the management to apply improved methods through the provision of effective tools. The pre-requisite for implementing these approaches will be an effective campaign about the value and importance of functioning wetlands for raising awareness of the general public, local communities, and particularly of the managers and decision makers. The project also intends to embed the results-based approach into wetland management implementation, for which an effective, systematic and regular monitoring, evaluation and reporting system to follow up the results-based performance of the wetland management is envisaged as another prerequisite for the success of the program.
The project will embed climate change adaption and mitigation measures into wetlands management plans reflecting the significant role wetlands play in climate adaptation and mitigation and the variety of climate stressors they face. Therefore, the project will explore scenarios for climate change in the catchment areas of pilot wetland’s and demonstrate participatory adaptation and mitigation measures for water and other uses in the basin area to sustain the livelihood of the communities as well as ensuring the functionality of the wetlands. Tying economic incentives and opportunities to wetland conservation and engaging the diversity of wetland users in the design and implementation of conservation measures will be guiding principles of the project.