Wetlands and their Role in Ecological Conservation in India

IAS Mains General Studies Sample Answers

Wetlands and their Role in Ecological Conservation in India. Discuss!

A wetland is an area of land whose soil has high water content either permanently or seasonally. Wetlands include swamps, marshes and bogs, among others. The water found in wetlands can be saltwater, fresh water, shallow water or brackish water. These accounts for 18.4% of India's total geographical area.Wetlands are one of the most productive eco-system, comparable to tropical evergreen forests in the biosphere and play a significant role in the ecological sustainability of a region.

Wetlands helps in ecological conservation in following ways:

  • Helps in conservation of endangered species.
  • Provides nesting home to marine animals and fishes.
  • Provides habitation to a large number of species of flora & fauna.
  • Trees in such area are of hard-wood, so can be useful in making of furniture etc.
  • Woods of trees in wetland are prone to saline water, so can be used in boat-making.
  • Prevents spread of salty water and thus helps on conservation of fertile soil.
  • Residues of ecosystem are useful manure for increasing soil productivity.
  • Wetland act as carbon-sinks and thus climate stabilizers which are vital in the present context to combat mass extinction.

India is a signatory to the Ramsar convention which is an intergovernmental treaty providing for the national action and international cooperation for the conservation and wise use wetlands and their resources. India has identified some wetlands for conservation under the National Wetlands conservation programme.

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