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Decision : 35 COM 7B.7
Serengeti National Park (United Republic of Tanzania) (N 156)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-11/35.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling Decision 34 COM 7B.5, adopted at its 34th session (Brasilia, 2010),

3. Noting with appreciation the statement by the State Party at the session, welcomes its decision to reconsider the North Road and to maintain the stretch of 53 km from Kleins gate to Tabora B traversing the northern wilderness area of the property as a gravel road, under the management of the "Tanzania National Parks" (TANAPA) and reserved mainly for tourism and administrative purposes, as it is currently;

4. Calls upon the international community and the donor agencies to consider providing support for the construction of a southern alignment, which will avoid Serengeti National Park;

5. Requests the State Party to finalise the on-going Environmental and Social Impact assessment (ESIA) for the above-mentioned proposed road works and submit to the World Heritage Committee for its consideration;

6. Recommends that a larger Strategic Environmental and Social Assessment (SEA) of the northern Tanzania road network is conducted;

7. Commends the States Parties of Tanzania and Kenya for the progress achieved in addressing the issue of water management in the Mara Basin, and encourages the Lake Victoria Basin commission to ensure the full implementation of the Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan for the Sustainable Management of the Mara River Basin;

8. Notes with concern the reports of a significant increase in rhinoceros and elephant poaching within the property as well as in other properties in Tanzania and eastern and southern Africa, and also requests the State Party, in cooperation with relevant States Parties in the region, to develop national and regional approaches to address this threat;

9. Takes note of the conclusion of the mission that the Outstanding Universal Value of the property is for the time being maintained but notes a number of growing threats to the integrity of property including poaching, human-wildlife conflict, water scarcity, invasive species, fires and management constraints;

10. Further requests the State Party to implement the following urgent actions as recommended by the 2010 World Heritage Centre/IUCN monitoring mission in order to ensure that these threats and management issues will not impact the future integrity of the property:

a) Allocate more resources to anti-poaching efforts, especially in light of the increasing poaching pressure on rhinoceros and elephants,

b) Intensify efforts to develop alternative livelihoods to help stem subsistence and commercial poaching,

c) Upscale the current efforts to manage the problem of human-wildlife conflicts, particularly conflict with elephants, through community-based methods,

d) Work with all relevant institutions and organizations, including those in Kenya, to control the spread of alien invasive species in the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem,

e) Carry out a detailed hydrological survey to determine the maximum carrying capacity of water use in the property and develop a comprehensive plan to address water shortage issues,

f) Engage the local communities, currently residing in the Speke Gulf area, in an open dialogue to find options that would minimize the costs and increase the benefits of the proposed plan to secure the area for wildlife use,

g) Carefully evaluate the options for improving the road from Naabi Hill to Seronera, in close cooperation with Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority, taking into consideration all potentially damaging environmental impacts, before considering a decision to tarmac the road,

h) Strengthen the funding base for the implementation of the General Management Plan (including the newly developed fire management plan) and improve its monitoring,

i) Revive the Serengeti Ecosystem Forum to enhance collaboration and coordination between Tanzania National Parks, the Ngorongoro Conservation Area Authority, the Wildlife Division, local communities and other relevant stakeholders in the Serengeti-Mara ecosystem to collectively combat the numerous threats to the ecosystem;

11. Also requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2012, a report on the state of conservation of the property, in particular on the completion of the ESIA mentioned in paragraph 5 and on progress on the implementation of the recommendations of the 2010 mission, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 36th session in 2012.

 Decisions Report
Context of Decision
Themes: Conservation
States Parties: United Republic of Tanzania
Year: 2011
Decision Code: 35 COM 7B.7