The importance of wetlands to safeguard local economies. The MedArtSal contribution to the restoration goal of the World Wetlands Day 2023

(c) Michele Fundarò - SEI - Saline Ettore e Infersa - Marsala (TP - Italy)

In the last 50 years, Mediterranean countries have seen 48% of their wetlands vanish including salinas, but also lagoons, deltas, lakes, marshes or rivers. On 2 February (World Wetlands Day) the MedArtSal partnership acknowledges the importance of this year’s message: It’s time for wetland restoration!

Word Wetlands Day - 2 February 2023 -

Wetlands are key drivers of local economies, as they provide freshwater for agriculture and food production, prevent droughts and floods, purify water or sequester carbon dioxide, among others. Global decline in these highly valuable ecosystems is generally linked to unsustainable water abstraction - mainly for agriculture, coastal development and insufficient maintenance. In the Mediterranean, where temperatures are rising faster, the impact on local economies will be higher than the rest of the world.

 (c) Lunamarina

MedArtSal project is contributing to restore and promote the value of 15 wetlands (salinas) in 4 Mediterranean countries (Spain, Italy, Tunisia, Lebanon) for the benefit of local communities, while creating green jobs, preserving ecological balance and recovering sites of cultural relevance.

World Wetlands Day 2023

This year’s theme of World Wetlands Day highlights the urgent need to prioritize wetland restoration and calls on an entire generation to take steps to revive and restore degraded wetlands.

Restoration is in fact one of the key actions as part of the MedArtSal pilot actions. Indeed, sustainable salinas that follows the MedArtSal model harness natural resources to generate economy in a socially and environmentally respectful way, ensuring the use of resources in the future. In this business model, economic development is based on sustainable salt production and the development of new products or services that help to preserve environmental and cultural values. 

(c) - Participatory cleaning and awareness action on the improvement and protection of the environment of the Bahía de Cádiz Natural Park (Cadiz - Spain)

In this sense, the MedArtSal experience can contribute to promote the wetlands restoration goal and amplify the message for World Wetlands Day by showcasing its success stories, inspiring new audiences and involving local producers and communities through the implementation of its sustainable business model.