Property: Ibiza, Biodiversity and Culture
Id. N°: 417Rev
State Party: Spain
Criteria: N(ii)(iv) / C(ii)(iii)(iv)
The Committee decided to inscribe the site on the basis of natural criteria (ii) and (iv) and cultural criteria (ii), (iii) and (iv).
Natural criteria (ii) and (iv):
The marine component of this site is characterised by the presence of dense and very well preserved prairies of oceanic Posidonia (seagrass) and coral reefs. Oceanic Posidonia only occurs in the Mediterranean basin and this site is the best preserved example within this region. The area also contains the most diverse community of Cladocora caespitosa, supporting 220 species, in the Mediterranean basin and habitat for three globally endangered species, including the Monk Seal. The area also contains an important community of Ecteinascidia turbinata, a marine species with recognised value to prevent and combat different types of cancer. Parts of the site are included in the List of Wetlands of International Importance especially as Waterfowl Habitat (Ramsar Convention) for migratory birds.
The Committee noted that since the twenty-third session of the Bureau, IUCN was informed about an EC-funded proposal to modify the port of Ibiza. IUCN has reviewed the EIA for this project and noted that it will not impact on the natural values of the site.
Cultural criteria (ii), (iii) and (iv):
Criterion (ii): The intact 16th century fortifications of Ibiza bear unique witness to the military architecture and engineering and the aesthetics of the Renaissance. This Italian-Spanish model was very influential, especially in the construction and fortification of towns in the New World.
Criterion (iii): The Phoenician ruins of Sa Caleta and the Phoenician-Punic cemetery of Puig des Molins are exceptional evidence of urbanization and social life in the Phoenician colonies of the western Mediterranean. They constitute a unique resource, in terms of volume and importance, of material from the Phoenician and Carthaginian tombs.
Criterion (iv): The Upper Town of Ibiza is an excellent example of a fortified acropolis which preserves in an exceptional way in its walls and in its urban fabric successive imprints of the earliest Phoenician settlements and the Arab and Catalan periods through to the Renaissance bastions. The long process of building the defensive walls has not destroyed the earlier phases or the street pattern, but has incorporated them in the ultimate phase.
Several delegates and observers commended the State Party for this nomination and reminded it about the great challenges that growing tourism will pose to the protection of the site.