17 June, 2008

Wetlands Forum meeting of 11 June 08

The presentations from the Forum meeting of 11 June 08 can be accessed below:

Ramsar Convention on Wetlands and Wetlands of International Importance in South Africa by Kiruben Naicker, DEAT.

Working for Wetlands by Winston Coe of WfWetlands.

Working for Wetlands 2009/10 Planning by Nancy Job, for LRI

Look at the new colour version of the Wetlands Forum logo.

12 June, 2008


Carnival City JHB 18 - 22 August 2008

Dear Wetlands-L

We are runnining the Environmental Auditor Course on the 18-22 August 2008 Carnival City, Brakpan JHB.
Please download the booking form and fax your completed form to 011 485 4146:


Payment for ecosystem services

Following on previous discussion at Wetlands Forum meetings around payment for ecosystem services, this example from the Maloti Drakensberg is of interest.

Results of recent research in the Maloti Drakensberg Water is predicted to be the single biggest future development constraint in South Africa. A new water supply augmentation option has been identified which can promote local economic development in rural areas and create hundreds of jobs. Paying people to manage the Maloti Drakensberg catchment for enhanced water supply has been shown to be financially feasible. Recent research in the Maloti Drakensberg shows that robust vegetation cover in the upper catchments – through maintaining the recommended cattle carrying capacity and by burning the mountain grasslands in the spring every second year – can enhance water resources by:
• Reducing summer stormflows,
• increasing winter baseflows by an additional 13 million m3 and 4 million m3 in the upper
Thukela and upper Umzimvubu catchments respectively,
• reducing annual sediment yields by 1.3 million m3 and 5 million m3 in the upper Thukela and
upper Umzimvubu rivers, and
• sequestering 134,000 tonnes and 334,000 tonnes of carbon per year in the upper Thukela and
upper Umzimvubu rivers.
In essence, good land use practice in high rainfall mountain areas is good for water security, carbon sequestration and other ecosystem services. The following services have high value, and can be traded:
• additional and more regular water supply for users - improving assurance of supply and adding value to both reticulated and raw water users,
• reduced sedimentation of water infrastructure and river ecosystems which reduces water storage and abstraction costs – thereby making cost savings,
• additional carbon sequestration which is tradable, and which also improves grassland productivity, and
• A range of other ecosystem services are also enhanced by this action such as reduced flooding, improved water quality, improved fishing, biodiversity conservation and improved grazing. These are economically beneficial to society but as yet cannot be traded in this location.
Importantly the management costs are at the most 20% of the direct value of tradable benefits, making this a financially attractive option. Improved management and rehabilitation will also result in 1,800 restoration jobs in the first 7 years, with some 500 permanent jobs.
Payment for ecosystem services is being implemented worldwide and has now been shown to have new and exciting applications here in South Africa. For more information go to http://www.futureworks.co.za/maloti_drakensberg_pes.htm to download the full report or contact Myles Mander from Futureworks at myles@futureworks.co.za or 031 764 6449



13:30 – 13:45 : Welcome and Chair’s Report
13:45 – 14:00: Simonsvlei Methods to Identify Wetland Plants Course by Wendy Hitchcock
14:00 – 14.40:
1) RAMSAR - An overview of Ramsar and what it means to have Ramsar status. Legislation to protect wetlands – looking to the future. By Kiruben Naicker / Stanley Tshitwamulomoni of DEAT
2) Important Bird Areas (IBAs), Ramsar and Wetlands by Vernon Head of BirdLife SA
14:40 – 15:10: Presenting the Working for Wetlands Draft Rehabilitation Plan for the Western Cape for 2009/10 By Nancy Job and Winston Coe
Discussion Points:
· Potential for Membership input to rehab plans
· Toward encouraging stewardship: ways of maximizing potential for interactions between WfWetlands projects and neighboring stakeholders.
15:40 – 16:00: Updates on Current Projects
· Update on wetland input to CAPE fine scale planning project - Kate Snaddon.
· Wetlands Workshop – Pat Holmes