jump to the content

Committee Decisions

36 COM 7B.81

Alto Douro Wine Region (Portugal) (C 1046)

The World Heritage Committee,

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

2.   Recalling Decision 25 COM X.A, adopted at its 25th session (Helsinki, 2001),

3.   Notes with concern the conclusions of the ICOMOS advisory mission that the potential impacts of the Foz Tua Hydro-electric Dam Project on the property and its setting would cause irreversible damage to the Outstanding Universal Value of the property;

4.   Also notes with concern that initial planning processes for this project have not taken full account of the World Heritage status of the property through an analysis of impact on its Outstanding Universal Value, and that an Environmental Impact Assessment had already given a conditionally favourable approval;

5.   Regrets that information on this project was not mentioned in the nomination dossier and was not communicated to the World Heritage Centre before commitments have been made, as required by Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines, but notes with satisfaction the explanation which has since been provided by the State Party;

6.   Expresses its concern that construction works commenced in April 2011, before the recommendations of the advisory mission were known and before the World Heritage Committee could consider the project;

7.   Notes with satisfaction the invitation by the State Party for a joint World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS/IUCN reactive monitoring mission to the property to consider the potential impact of the revised Foz Tua Hydro-electric Dam project on the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, and to consider the property’s management system, the protection of the setting and the overall state of conservation of the property;

8.   Takes note of the decision of the State Party to significantly slow down the pace of the  construction work of the Foz Tua Dam and related infrastructure, as from the adoption of this decision until the report of the joint reactive monitoring mission is published and to implement the recommendations;

9.   Decides to request the Director-General, in consultation with the Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee, to officially put forward concrete requests for action to the State Party based on the results of the joint reactive monitoring mission, if necessary;

10.  Notes that the State Party is revising the plans for the dam, power station and other landscape works linked to infrastructure and requests that full details of these plans, together with a heritage impact assessment, be submitted as soon as possible to the World Heritage Centre for review by the Advisory Bodies;

11.  Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2013, an updated report on the revision or reconsideration of the Foz Tua Hydro-Electric Dam project and on the overall state of conservation of the property for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 37th session in 2013.

Documents
PDF Original Decision Document
Context of Decision
PDF WHC-12/36.COM/7B
Themes: Conservation
States Parties: Portugal
Session: 36COM