The Executive Director of the Wildlife Division (WD) of the Forestry Commission (FC), Bernard Asamoah-Boateng, has called on Ghanaians to help preserve the remaining wetlands across the country to sustain their benefits.
A wetland is an area of land or an ecosystem that is flooded or saturated by water permanently or seasonally.
Mr Asamoah-Boateng said this when the WD of the FC marked this year’s World Wetlands Day with a brief visit to the Densu Delta site in Weija, Accra, last Thursday.
World Wetlands Day is marked on February 2nd every year to raise global awareness on the vital role of the ecosystem and its support for livelihoods.
Mr Asamoah-Boateng emphasised that to perpetuate our existence on earth, there was the crucial need to restore wetlands.
“We really need wetlands. God in his own wisdom created the universe and the ecosystem, and part of the ecosystem is the wetland and they have a function and purpose which no other thing that God created can serve,” he added.
The Executive Director of the WD of the FC said the restoration was necessary because majority of the country’s wetlands had been destroyed.
James Selormey, a Wildlife Officer with the WD of the FC, said that wetlands were important for biodiversity conservation as they served as habitats for some organisms.
“Also, wetlands provide alternative livelihoods for local communities because there are people who live closely to these wetlands and they benefit from them,” he added.
Again, Mr Selormey said that wetlands mitigated floods, provided ecosystem services and played a crucial role in the fight against climate change.
“They serve as reserve areas or reservoirs for floodwaters or storms. Therefore, it is important that we preserve our wetlands as the plant species that are in them help in soaking the floodwaters.
Other animal species, like the migratory birds, also travel around the world to benefit from such ecosystems,” he stated.
BY ABIGAIL ARTHUR