On February 2, 1971, countries around the world came together in Ramsar, Iran, for the first ecologically focused convention. The Convention on Wetlands, an Intergovernmental Treaty, provides the framework for national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use of wetlands and their resources. Today, 160 countries have signed the Treaty, and 1,911 wetland sites have been designated as Wetlands of International Importance.
In the U.S. there are currently nearly 30 designated Ramsar sites amounting to more than 6,300 square miles of wetlands. Not only are wetlands an integral component to a healthy ecosystem; they are also a great place to paddle! Ramsar’s focus this year is on responsible ecotourism, and the ACA encourages you to visit your local wetlands by canoe, kayak, or SUP--check out the boards in Ramsar's poster! While you’re there, be sure to leave our wetlands cleaner than the way you found them!