Join us to celebrate World Wetlands Day 2023 with an online symposium followed by in-person wetland tours.

In 1971, the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands became the first global conservation agreement. Its founding principles specify seven values of wetlands, including sustaining biodiversity, filtering the water supply, storing carbon, and enhancing well being, among others. This symposium honors that pact by digging deeper into the question of values. We bring together renowned environmentalists from three different sectors whose work informs us of the value of wetlands from local, national, and international perspectives. The symposium is hosted by Newport Bay Conservancy, Amigos de Bolsa Chica, Sea & Sage Audubon Society, and Irvine Ranch Water District.


This event is FREE with the option to donate to help support our work protecting and preserving Southern California’s wetlands.


All talks will take place over Zoom

9:00-9:45 a.m. William R. Moomaw, “Wetlands in a Changing Climate”

9:45-10:30 a.m. Ian Swift, “Wetlands and Climate Change in Central Orange County”

10:30-10:45 a.m. Break

10:45-11:30 a.m. Rachelle Gould, “The United Nations’ IPBES Values Assessment: Understanding the Multiple Values of Nature”

11:30 a.m. -12:15 p.m. Panel Discussion


All tours will take place from 2:00-3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb 4th.

Tour 1: Irvine Ranch Water District Ponds, led by Ian Swift and Bruce Aird, Meeting Point: San Joaquin Marsh Wildlife Sanctuary

Tour 2: Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve, led by Vic Leipzig, Meeting Point: TBA

Tour 3: Big Canyon, led by Alys Arenas, Meeting Point: Big Canyon Parking Lot