jump to the content

Committee Decisions

36 COM 7B.5

Selous Game Reserve (United Republic of Tanzania) (N 199)

The World Heritage Committee,

1.  Having examined Document WHC-12/36.COM/7B.Add,

2.  Recalling Decision 35 COM 7B.6, adopted at its 35th session (UNESCO, 2011),

3.  Reiterates its utmost concern about the multiple threats affecting the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), including high levels of wildlife poaching (particularly of elephants), the evident deterioration in management, and the proposed Stiegler’s Gorge and Kidunda dams which, if approved, are likely to cause serious and irreversible damage to the property’s OUV;

4.  Takes note of the statement by the State Party on the protection and the conservation of the Selous Game Reserve;

5.  Considers that the approval of any dam, mining or oil exploration within the property would constitute a clear basis for its inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger, in line with Paragraph 180 of the Operational Guidelines, and urges the State Party to abandon plans for the different development projects which are incompatible with the World Heritage status of the property;

6.  Notes with satisfaction that Dominion Petroleum has relinquished its oil production sharing agreement for Selous, but deems that oil exploration and exploitation remain a threat to the property and also urges the State Party to make a clear commitment to not explore for or exploit oil within the property, in line with the Committee’s established position that such developments are incompatible with World Heritage status, and to enact specific legislation to prohibit prospecting, oil developments and mining within the property on the basis of its World Heritage status;

7.  Further urges the State Party to implement the remaining actions requested by the Committee in Decision 35 COM 7B.6, in order to ensure the protection of the property’s Outstanding Universal Value, in particular:

a)  Finalize the creation of the autonomous Wildlife Authority and reinstate the Revenue Retention Scheme,

b)  Ensure that the design of the Kidunda dam will not affect the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and avoid flooding part of the property or key wildlife areas on its boundaries,

c)   Develop and implement an emergency plan to strengthen anti-poaching activities in the property in order to cope with the alarming increase in poaching,

8.   Also reiterates its encouragement that the State Party provide appropriate protection to the Selous-Niassa Corridor which is becoming progressively fragmented, and considers that its permanent protection as a buffer zone or its inclusion within the property is vital to the long-term integrity of the latter;

9.   Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2013, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and on progress in the implementation of anti-poaching measures, the reinstatement of the Revenue Retention Scheme and the creation of an autonomous Wildlife Authority, including confirmation that no permits have been issued for the various development projects within the property under consideration, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 37th session in 2013, with a view to considering, in the absence of substantial progress, the possible inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Themes: Conservation, List of World Heritage in Danger, Operational Guidelines, Outstanding Universal Value
Properties: Selous Game Reserve
Session: 36COM