|Wairarapa Moana was granted Ramsar status this month, a milestone five years in the making. That means it has been recognised by The Ramsar Convention as a significant wetland that must be protected.
Aotearoa became a party to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands in 1976, and Wairarapa Moana is just the seventh wetland in the country to receive the status. Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage, along with Treaty Partners from Rangitāne and Kahungunu, gathered at Ōnoke in South Wairarapa to mark the special occasion.
The minister acknowledged that wetlands are integral to the health of the land, waterways, plants and wildlife because of the crucial ecosystem services they provide. She also recognised the damage colonisation has had on the moana and, in turn, the people. The new Ramsar status requires the government to manage Wairarapa Moana, protect the values that it has, monitor it, and report to the international convention.