State of the World Forum 2000

Special Session
September 6, 2000

The  World’s  Fresh  Water  &  Wetlands
in  the  21st  Century


Convener & Moderator

    Dr. Wally N’Dow
    Convening Chairman, State of the World Forum 2000
    Secretary General, UN Conference on Human Settlements, Habitat II


    Delmar Blasco
    Secretary General, Ramsar Bureau, Convention on Wetlands of International Importance

    Janet N. Abramovitz
    Senior Researcher, The Worldwatch Institute
    Author, Imperiled Waters, Impoverished Future: The Decline of Freshwater Ecosystems

    Dr. Frederick A. Swarts
    Secretary General, World Conference on Preservation and Sustainable Development in the Pantanal
    Senior Research Scientist, Waterland Research Institute
    Editor, The Pantanal: Understanding and Preserving the World's Largest Wetland (Paragon House, 2000)

Sponsored by

The Interreligious and International Federation for World Peace, Inc.
The Waterland Research Institute for Water and Land Resources, Inc.

The State of the World "Forum 2000" was convened from September 4-10, 2000, at the New York Hilton and Towers.  Among the co-chairs of the State of the World Forum are H.E. Oscar Arias (Nobel Peace Prize Laureate), Jane Goodall (Primatologist), Mikhail Gorbachev (Nobel Peace Prize Laureate), Ruud Lubbers (Chairman, World Wildlife Fund), Ted Turner (Vice Chairman, Time Warner, Inc.), and Desmond Tutu (Nobel Peace Prize Laureate).  This session on "The World's Fresh Water and Wetlands in the 21st Century," took place on Wednesday, September 6.  Dr. N'Dow, who served as the Convening Chair of the State of the World Forum 2000, also served as this session's Chair.  Mr. Delmar Blasco addressed the overall state of the world's wetlands, and the role that the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands of International Importance can and should play in helping to value and preserve these unique and valuable systems.  Ms. Janet N. Abramovitz provided an overall assessment and perspective on the world's fresh water and on the challenges being faced with respect to our rivers, lakes, wetlands and also oceans during this twenty-first century.  Dr. Frederick A. Swarts, in his paper titled "The State of the Pantanal: The World's Largest Wetland System in the 21st Century," provided a comprehensive overview of this extraordinarily large, valuable and diverse system, located in central-western Brazil, eastern Bolivia and northeastern Paraguay.