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Committee Decisions

35 COM 8B.9

Natural Properties - Western Ghats (India)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Documents WHC-11/35.COM/8B and WHC-11/35.COM/INF.8B2,

2. Refers the nomination of the Western Ghats, India, back to the State Party, noting the potential of the nominated property to meet criteria (ix) and (x), to allow the State Party to address the following important issues:

a) Review the scope and composition of the current serial nomination to take account of any recommendations of the 'Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel' or other relevant information, in order to reflect the full spectrum of ecological and biodiversity values of the Western Ghats, and to further enhance the protection of the values of the nominated property,

b) Take measures to reduce the impact of existing and planned infrastructure as well as disturbed areas on the values of the property,

c) Review and strengthen buffer zones or other measures to provide increased protection or buffering for the values within the nominated property, and strengthen the ecological connectivity measures to ensure consistency and greater functional linkages between component sites,

d) Improve coordination and integration between component parts of the property, particularly through the existing mechanisms of the Western Ghats Natural Heritage Management Committee and the preparation and implementation of an overarching management framework, for the serial property as a whole,

e) Facilitate increased engagement with all stakeholders to build awareness and support, foster participatory governance approaches, and ensure equitable sharing of benefits,

f) Harmonize arrangements between the 'Western Ghats Natural Heritage Committee' and the 'Western Ghats Ecology Expert Panel' and strengthen community membership and input through the establishment of the proposed 'Western Ghats Natural Heritage Conservation Authority' and other relevant advisory committees;

3. Highly commends the State Party for its on-going commitment to ensure a comprehensive approach to conserving the globally recognised high biodiversity values of the Western Ghats, noting the scale and complexity of this area.

Themes: Inscriptions on the World Heritage List
States Parties: India
Properties: Western Ghats
Session: 35COM