Restoration and protection of the Kamjan International Wetland in Korbal district of Fars province in Iran, a Global Environment Facility Small Grants Programme (GEF SGP) UNDP grantee was started by a local group of revivalists. The main aim of the revivalists was not only to revive the ecosystem, but also to improve the villagers’ lifestyle and skills. This was achieved through teaching the locals how to reduce on the over exploitation of water resources in order to save the eco-system.
In 1983, with an aim of agricultural development, the wetland bed was drained by Jihad Sazandegi and the Water Organization and the wetland bed was completely dried. With the drying of the wetland, a center of dust production was created. Due to these problems, the fertile marginal lands encountered a decrease in agricultural products and many livestock died following the wiping out of the vegetation. The dried wetland has further been damaged by the surrounding human communities and marginal farms.
The revivalists realised that it was a crucial to train and encourage all age groups of the community about the protection of wetland. They set up regional festivals and gatherings based on farm works calendars, seminars, celebrations and workshops. This was to create awareness about the situation and the importance of the protection of the environment. The other solution was educating the children with topics about the environment and learning about the importance of conserving wetlands on their lives.
Nature enthusiasts and environment lovers provided no-charge excavators and other machinery for the success of the project. The revivalists also carried out activities including planting tamarisk trees and reeds, educating students about wetland conservation, providing facilities for families to start traditional livestock farming, empowering women in the professions such as tailoring, and training people on how to produce medicinal and greenhouse plants.
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The Energy Globe Award, World Award for Sustainability, is organized by the independent Energy Globe Foundation from Austria. The Energy Globe Award is presented in the categories of Life: Earth, Fire, Water, Air, the future-oriented category Youth and a yearly special category.