|The World Conference on Preservation and Sustainable
Development in the Pantanal convened from February 26-28, 1999. Gathering
in Washington, D.C. for this unprecedented event were representatives of
governmental, intergovernmental, and non-governmental organizations, as
well as distinguished academics, researchers, environmentalists, entrepreneurs,
wetland scientists, and other specialists.
The participants, representing 41 nations, converged
in order to discuss challenges confronting the Pantanal, which is considered
by many to be the world’s largest wetland. Stretching through much
of the states of Mato Grosso and Mato Grosso do Sul in Brazil, and blending
into the Gran Chaco or el Pantanal of eastern Bolivia and northeastern
Paraguay, the Pantanal is renowned as one of the most vast and rich ecological
reservations on the globe.
Addressing and attending the conference were leading
authorities from the three principal nations, as well as from many of the
world’s premier international organizations dealing with environmental
and developmental issues, including the United Nations Environment Programme
(UNEP), the Ramsar Bureau of the Convention on Wetlands of International
Importance, the Organization of American States (OAS), the United Nations
Development Programme (UNDP), the World Bank, the Inter-American Development
Bank, Worldwatch Institute, and Conservation International of Brazil.
Also contributing to the proceedings were select experts from leading universities
in Latin America, North America and Asia, and official representatives
of various governmental bodies.
This three-day conference offered a singular
opportunity for specialists and authorities from wide-ranging disciplines,
distinct viewpoints, and an international perspective to explore
fundamental issues relative to conservation and sustainable development
in one of the world’s more unique, remarkable and diverse ecosystems.
The World Conference on Preservation and
Sustainable Development in the Pantanal provided both broad educational
value in understanding the characteristics and nature of this immense wetland
ecosystem, as well as specific insights regarding current and projected
challenges to its future. The conference was co-sponsored by
the World University Federation, the University of Bridgeport, Sun Moon
University, and The Washington Times Foundation, with technical support
of the Waterland Research Institute.
This web site provides an introduction to
the World Conference on Preservation and Sustainable Development in the
Pantanal, to the Pantanal itself, and to the key issues surrounding this
Pantanal photographs were provided
by Douglas Trent, Focus Tours
Conference photographs provided
by the Waterland Research Institute
See also the Ramsar
Bureau's site on the conference