Official Journal No. 42,967 of 27 January 1997
By means of which the "Convention Relating to the Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Habitat of Aquatic Birds" is approved, signed in Ramsar on two (2) February of one thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (1971).
THE CONGRESS OF COLOMBIA,
Having regard to the text of the Convention Relating to the Wetlands of International Importance, especially as Habitat of Aquatic Birds, signed in Ramsar on two (2) February of a thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (1971).
(To be transcribed: attached photocopy of the full text of the international instrument mentioned, duly authenticated by the Head of the Legal Office (E), of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs).
The Contracting Parties.
Recognizing the interdependence of man and his environment,
Considering the fundamental ecological functions of wetlands as regulators of hydrological regimes and as habitat for characteristic fauna and flora, especially of aquatic birds.
Convinced that wetlands constitute a resource of great economic, cultural, scientific and recreational value, whose loss would be irreparable,
Wishing to prevent progressive intrusions in and loss of wetlands in the future,
Recognising that waterfowl in their seasonal migrations can cross borders and that they should therefore be regarded as an international resource,
Convinced that the conservation of wetlands and their flora and fauna can be ensured by harmonizing national policies that provide for coordinated international action.
The following have been agreed:
1. For the purposes of this Convention, the extensions of marshes, swamps and peatlands, or areas covered by water, whether natural or artificial, permanent or temporary, stagnant or current, sweet, brackish or otherwise, are wetlands. salted, including extensions of sea water, the depth of which at low tide does not exceed six metres.
2. For the purposes of this Convention, aquatic birds are the ones that are ecologically dependent on wetlands.
1. Each contracting party shall designate suitable wetlands of its territory to be included in the List of Wetlands of International Importance, hereinafter referred to as "The List", maintained by the Office established pursuant to Article 8or. The limits of each wetland shall be accurately described and also drawn on a map and may comprise its adjacent coastal or coastal areas, as well as the islands or extensions of sea water of a depth greater than six metres. at low tide, when they are within the wetland and especially when they are of importance as aquatic bird habitat.
2. The selection of wetlands to be included in the List shall be based on their international importance in ecological, botanical, zoological, limnological or hydrological terms. In the first place, wetlands that have international importance for waterfowl should be included in any season of the year.
3. The inclusion of a wetland in the List is carried out without prejudice to the exclusive rights of sovereignty of the Contracting Party in whose territory it is a wetland.
4. Each Contracting Party shall designate at least one wetland to be included in the List when signing the Convention or depositing its instrument of ratification or accession in accordance with the provisions of Article
5. Any Contracting Party shall have the right to add to the List other wetlands located in its territory, to extend those already included or for urgent reasons of national interest to withdraw from the List or to reduce the limits of wetlands already including and report on these amendments as quickly as possible to the organisation or government responsible for the functions of the permanent office specified in Article 8.
6. Each Contracting Party shall take into account its responsibilities of an international nature with regard to the conservation, management and rational use of the migratory populations of aquatic birds, both by designating wetlands of their territory for their inclusion in the List, as in exercising their right to modify their previous entries.
1. The Contracting Parties shall develop and implement their planning in such a way as to promote the conservation of the wetlands included in the List and as far as possible the rational use of the wetlands of their territory.
2. Each Contracting Party shall take the necessary measures to inform as soon as possible about the modifications of the ecological conditions of the wetlands situated in its territory and included in the List, and which have been or may have been (a) to be produced as a result of the technological development of pollution or any other intervention of man. Information on such modifications shall be transmitted without delay to the organisation or government responsible for the functions of the permanent office specified in Article 8.
1. Each Contracting Party shall encourage the conservation of wetlands and aquatic birds by creating natural reserves in those areas, whether or not included in the List, and shall take appropriate measures for their custody.
2. Where a Contracting Party for urgent reasons of national interest withdraws from the list or reduces the limits of a humeral included therein, it shall, as far as possible, compensate for the loss of wetland resources and in particular to create new ones. natural reserves for aquatic birds and for the protection of an appropriate portion of their original habitat, in the same region or elsewhere.
3. The contracting parties shall encourage the research and exchange of data and publications relating to wetlands and their flora and fauna.
4. The Contracting Parties shall endeavour to increase the populations of waterfowl by the management of suitable wetlands.
5. The Contracting Parties shall encourage the training of staff for the study, management and custody of wetlands.
ARTICLE 5o. The Contracting Parties shall hold consultations on the fulfilment of the obligations arising out of the Convention, in particular in the case of a wetland which is extended by the territories of of a Contracting Party or a hydrological system shared by several of them. At the same time, they will strive to coordinate and actively support current and future policies and regulations regarding the conservation of wetlands and their flora and fauna.
1. A Conference of the Contracting Parties shall be established to review this Convention and to promote its implementation. The office referred to in Article 8 (1) shall convene the ordinary meetings of the Conference of the Contracting Parties at intervals of not more than three years, unless the conference decides otherwise, and extraordinary meetings shall be held at written request of at least one third of the contracting parties. At each regular meeting, the Conference of the Contracting Parties shall determine the place and date of the next ordinary meeting.
2. The Conference of the Contracting Parties shall be competent:
(a) To discuss the application of this convention;
(b) To discuss additions and modifications to the list;
(c) To consider information regarding changes in the ecological conditions of the wetlands included in the List, provided in application of Article 3.2;
(d) To make general or specific recommendations to the Contracting Parties and relating to the conservation, management and rational use of wetlands and their flora and fauna;
(e) To request competent international bodies to prepare reports and statistics on matters of an essentially international nature that relate to wetlands;
(f) To adopt other recommendations or resolutions with a view to promoting the implementation of this Convention.
3. The Contracting Parties shall ensure that those responsible for the management of wetlands at all levels are informed and take into account the recommendations of those conferences as regards conservation, management and rational use. of the wetlands and its flora and fauna.
4. The Conference of the Contracting Parties shall adopt the rules of each of its meetings.
5. The Conference of the Contracting Parties shall establish and permanently review the Financial Regulation of this Convention. In each of its ordinary meetings, it shall vote on the budget for the following financial year by a majority of two-thirds of the Contracting Parties present and voting.
6. Each Contracting Party shall contribute to the budget according to the scale of contributions approved unanimously by the Contracting Parties present and voting at an ordinary meeting of the Conference of the Contracting Parties.
1. The Contracting Parties shall include in their representation before conferences persons who are experts in wetlands or aquatic birds, for their knowledge and experience acquired in scientific, administrative or other functions.
2. Each Contracting Party represented at a conference shall have one vote and the recommendations, resolutions and decisions shall be adopted by a simple majority of the Contracting Parties present and voting unless the Convention becomes available. something else.
1. The International Union for the Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources shall perform the functions of the Permanent Bureau under this Convention, until such time as another organization, or a government is designated by a a majority of two thirds of all Contracting Parties.
2. The obligations of the Permanent Bureau shall be among others:
(a) Collaborate on the convening and organization of the conferences provided for in Article 6o.;
(b) Maintain the List of Wetlands of International Importance and receive information from the Contracting Parties on any addition, extension, deletion or reduction of the wetlands included in the list, as provided for in Article 2.5;
(c) Receive information from the Contracting Parties on any modification of the ecological conditions of the wetlands included in the List, as provided for in Article 3.2;
(d) Notify the contracting parties of any modification of the List or change in the characteristics of the wetlands included therein, and provide for such matters to be discussed at the next Conference;
(e) To inform the Contracting Party concerned of the recommendations of the Conferences as regards such modifications to the List or to changes in the characteristics of the wetlands included therein.
1. The Convention will remain indefinitely open for signature.
2. Any member of the United Nations Organization or one of its specialized agencies, or of the International Atomic Energy Agency, or part of the Statutes of the International Court of Justice, may be a Contracting Party to the International Atomic Energy Agency. convention by:
(a) Signature without reservation of ratification;
(b) Signature under reservation of ratification, followed by ratification;
3. Ratification or accession shall be effected by the deposit of an instrument of ratification or accession with the Director-General of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (hereinafter referred to as "the"). Depositary ".
1. The Convention shall enter into force four months after seven States have become Contracting Parties to the Convention in accordance with the provisions of Article 9.2.
2. From that point on, the Convention shall enter into force for each Contracting Party four months after the date on which it has signed it without reservation of ratification or where it has deposited its instrument of ratification or accession.
1. This Convention may be amended at a meeting of the Contracting Parties convened for that purpose in accordance with this Article.
2. Any Contracting Party may submit proposals for amendments.
3. The text of any proposed amendment and the reasons for it shall be communicated to the organisation or to the government acting as a permanent office under this Convention (hereinafter referred to as the Office), and shall communicate them without delay to the all Contracting Parties. Any comments of a Contracting Party on the text; shall be communicated to the Office for the three months following the date on which the Office has communicated the proposed amendments to the Contracting Parties. The office shall, immediately after the closing date for the submission of the comments, communicate to the Contracting Parties all the parties it has received up to that date.
4. At the written request of a third of the Contracting Parties, the office shall convene a meeting of the Contracting Parties to examine any proposed amendment communicated in accordance with paragraph 3. The office shall consult the Parties on the date and place of the meeting.
5. Amendments shall be adopted by a majority of two-thirds of the Contracting Parties present and voting.
6. Once the proposal has been adopted, the amendment shall enter into force for the Contracting Parties which have accepted it on the first day of the fourth month following the date on which the two-thirds of the Contracting Parties have deposited an instrument of acceptance to the depositary. For any Contracting Party which deposits an instrument of acceptance after the date on which the two-thirds of the Contracting Parties have deposited an instrument of acceptance, the amendment shall enter into force on the first day of the fourth month following that of the to the date of deposit of the instrument of acceptance by that party.
1. This Convention will remain in force for an indefinite period.
2. Any Contracting Party may denounce the Convention after five years of the date of entry into force for that party by written notification to the depositary.
1. The depositary shall inform all States which have signed the convention as soon as possible or have acceded to it:
a) The signatures of this convention;
b) The deposit of instruments of ratification of this convention;
c) The deposit of instruments of accession to this convention;
d) The date of entry into force of this convention;
e) Notification notifications for this convention.
2. When this convention has entered into force, the depositary shall register it with the Secretariat of the United Nations, in accordance with the provisions of Article 102 of the Letter.
In faith of which, the underwritten, duly
authorized for this purpose, they sign this convention.
Made in Ramsar on February 2, 1971 in a single copy
original in English, French, German and Russian, texts that are all
equally authentication1. The custody of that copy shall be entrusted.
to the depositary, which will issue certified copies
and conform to all Contracting Parties.
The undersigned head of the Legal Office
from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs,
That the present reproduction is faithful photocopy taken from the certified text of the "Convention Relating to the Wetlands of International Importance Especially as Habitat of Aquatic Birds", signed in Ramsar on February 2, thousand nine hundred Seventy-one (1971), a document that rests in the archives of the Legal Office of this Ministry.
Dada en Santa Fe de Bogota, D.C., a nineteen dias (19) dias (sic)
of the month of March of a thousand nine hundred and ninety-six (1996).
Chief Legal Officer (E.),
SONIA PEREIRA PORTILLA.
From the Bill, through which the "Convention Relating to the Wetlands of International Importance, Especially as Habitat of Aquatic Birds," was approved, made in Ramsar-Iran on February 2, 1971.
Honorable Senators and Representatives:
On behalf of the Government of Colombia and subject to the provisions of Articles 150 numeral 16, 189 numeral 2o. and 224 of the Political Constitution, I have the honor to submit to the honorable Congress of the Republic the bill through which the " Convention Relating to the Wetlands of International Importance, Especially as the Habitat of Aquatic Birds ", signed in Ramsar on two (2) February 1971, as amended by the Paris Protocol on three (3) December 1982 and by the Regina amendments of twenty-eight (28) May 1987, in the framework of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization and Culture -Unesco-.
Protection of the Environment is one of the fundamental principles that our new Political Charter has gathered, thus joining the growing global concern for the conservation of this Planet. Control of environmental deterioration, repair of damage to the environment, safeguarding of diversity and integrity of the environment, sustainable development of natural resources, conservation of areas of special importance It is the duty of a state which, like ours, has full awareness of the value of its natural riches.
Accordingly, through the 8o., 79, 80, 81, 82, and 226, these postulates found an echo in Colombia's Political Constitution. But they are only important and effective if mechanisms are put in place to allow for consistent and continued development, either through the adoption of international conventions on the subject or through the adoption of national origin.
Likewise, Law 99 of 1993, in its article 5o., paragraph 24, attributes to the Ministry of the Environment the regulation of conditions for the conservation and management of cienagas, lakes, lagoons and other ecosystems Continental water.
Additionally, the Ministry of the Environment has the function of promoting relations with other countries in environmental matters and multilateral cooperation for the protection of natural resources, as well as representing the National Government. in the implementation of international treaties and conventions on the environment and renewable natural resources.
This Convention would be an essential element in the policies adopted by Colombia in the National Environmental Development Plan for the promotion of sustainable environmental management. This includes the care, maintenance and recovery of our water systems and the preservation of strategic ecosystems that, like wetlands, are characterized by their great biodiversity but also because they are seriously threatened. The restoration of land, pollution and the excessive exploitation of species are reasons for the priority to be given to the defence of these ecosystems.
For their unique characteristics, the wetlands provide hydrological and ecological services of vital interest to national development, so it is essential to prevent their environmental deterioration by strengthening and consolidating their presence. The international community of the country according to national needs and interests.
And it's that wetlands are one of the most productive ecosystems in the world. In addition to their great aesthetic and landscape value, they have a worldwide impact on fishing, because two thirds of this depends on their good condition. They also maintain the water level which is an essential element for the proper functioning of agriculture, wood production, water storage, flood regulation and the reduction of natural hazards.
Stabilize, also, the coastal belts, purify the waters for consumption and protect the coastal torrents, likewise, constitute an essential element for the survival of numerous species of fauna and flora, many of which are in danger of extinction.
Intergenerational responsibility is a duty that the State cannot propose. For the same reason, the approval of a Convention such as the one that is now being considered by the honorable Congressmen would be an important element in the preservation of not only an important component of our natural resources but also of an acquis that, like the birds that migrate there, belongs to humanity.
2. The Convention.
2.1 General appearance.
This Convention is a Framework Intergovernmental Treaty for international cooperation in the field of wetland conservation. At present, ninety (90) countries, including Argentina, Brazil, Bolivia, Costa Rica, Chile, Ecuador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Panama, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela belonging to the Latin American community, are members of this Convention. Colombia is the big absentee.
The primary objective of this Convention is the conservation and protection of wetlands of international importance and, in particular, those that host aquatic birds that are ecologically dependent on wetlands.
The Convention defines these ecosystems as those extensions of marshes, swamps, peatlands, or natural or artificial waters, permanent or temporary, stagnant or current, sweet, brackish or salty, including extensions of marine water whose depth at low tide does not exceed six metres.
2.2 Obligations arising from the Convention.
By adhering to the Convention, the State party undertakes to respect four principal obligations, namely the designation of at least one wetland to be included in the list of wetlands of international importance, the rational use of all these ecosystems, the creation of natural reserves and mutual consultations between States when they share one.
The inclusion of a wetland in the list is without prejudice to the exclusive rights of sovereignty of the Contracting Party in whose territory the wetland is located.
The Contracting Parties may, for urgent reasons of national interest, withdraw from the list or reduce the limits of the wetland included in the list, but the loss of the wetland resource and in particular the loss of the wetland should be compensated. create new natural reserves for waterfowl and for the protection of an appropriate portion of their original habitat, in the same region or elsewhere.
2.3 Conditions to be a part.
Any Member State of the United Nations or of one of its specialized agencies or of the International Atomic Energy Agency or of the Statute of the International Court of Justice may be a Contracting Party to the Convention by:
a) Signature without reservation of ratification;
b) The signature under reservation of ratification, followed by ratification;
3. Reasons to approve the Convention.
Colombia has more than two and a half million hectares of wetlands. The most diverse is located in San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina and is in danger of disappearance. But also in the Sabana and different neighborhoods of Bogota, multiple wetlands are distributed to those who dump waste or waste and, in addition, many are refilled to be sold as lots. These ecosystems are, in most cases, in a state of great fragility. Given their sensitivity, environmental variations affect them to a large extent. This element, the fact that it is one of the most productive reducts in the world and the poor conservation of them, makes it necessary for Colombia to be part of the Convention.
Considering that Colombia does not have enough technique and much less with possibilities of internal financing, the approval of this Convention will make it possible that access to technology transfer, to the training of personnel specialized and obtaining resources of international origin is much more viable through the presentation of environmental improvement projects to the Fund for the Conservation of Wetlands of the Convention itself, or through its contacts with bilateral and multilateral development agencies.
On the other hand, membership gives countries voice on the main international forums on conservation and rational use of wetlands. However, having one or more wetlands in the list places the member country on a level whose international importance enables it to have greater elements of internal control for its conservation.
The Convention also provides access to the latest information and advice on the establishment of internationally accepted standards in the management of wetlands, such as, for example, the classification of wetland types, the obtaining data to describe them, an optimal selection of criteria for the identification of wetlands of international importance and access to guidelines on the application of the concept of rational use through national policies of wetlands and technical guidelines on management plans.
It is not enough to point out that this Convention is one of the five global intergovernmental treaties for the conservation and rational use of natural resources and is the only one that deals with these types of ecosystems.
For the above reasons, the government considers the approval of this Convention to be of great importance for the country.
Of the honorable Senators
and Representatives very cordially,
The Deputy Foreign Minister in charge
from the Duties of the Minister's Office,
CAMILO REYES RODRIGUEZ.
The Minister of the Environment,
JOSE VICENTE MOGOLLON.
EXECUTIVE BRANCH OF PUBLIC POWER
PRESIDENCY OF THE REPUBLIC.
Santa Fe de Bogota, D.C.
Approved. Submit to the honorable consideration
National Congress for Constitutional Effects.
(Fdo.) ERNESTO SAMPER PIZANO.
The Foreign Minister,
(Fdo.) RODRIGO PARDO GARCIA-PENA.
ARTICLE 1A. Approve the "Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, Especially as Waterfowl Habitat", signed in Ramsar on the two (2) February of a thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (1971).
ARTICLE 2A. Pursuant to article 1o. of Law 7a. In 1944, the "Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, Especially as Waterfowl Habitat", signed in Ramsar on two (2) February of a thousand nine hundred and seventy-one (1971), which was established by the article 1or. of this law is approved, will force the country from the date on which the international link with respect to it is perfected.
ARTICLE 3A. This Law governs from the date of its publication.
The President of the honorable Senate of the Republic,
LUIS FERNANDO LONDONO CAPURRO.
The Secretary General of the honorable Senate of the Republic,
PEDRO PUMAREJO VEGA.
The President of the honourable House of Representatives.
GIOVANNI LAMBOGLIA MAZZILLI.
The Secretary General of the honorable House of Representatives,
DIEGO VIVAS TAFUR.
REPUBLIC OF COLOMBIA-NATIONAL GOVERNMENT.
Contact and post.
Execute previous Constitutional Court review,
pursuant to article 241-10 of the Political Constitution.
Dada en Santa Fe de Bogota, D.C., a 21 de enero de 1997.
ERNESTO SAMPER PIZANO.
The Foreign Minister,
MARIA EMMA MEJIA VELEZ.
The Minister of the Environment,
JOSE VICENTE MOGOLLON VELEZ.
1 According to the provisions of the Final Act of the Conference which terminated the Protocol, the depositary provided to the second conference of the Contracting Parties the official versions of the convention in Arabic, Chinese and Spanish, versions which were prepared in consultation with the governments concerned and with the assistance of the Office.