1.         Te Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand (New Zealand) (N 551)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1990

Criteria  (vii)(viii)(ix)(x)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/551/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/551/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions


Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/551/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2004

On 12 February 2004 the World Heritage Centre received a report from the State Party concerning an oil-spill accident at Te Wahipounamu – South West New Zealand. The report indicated that approximately 13,000 liters of diesel fuel had spilled into the harbour at Freshwater Basin at the head of Milford Sound, which borders the Fiordland National Park that is part of the World Heritage property.


Environment Southland, the responsible agency for the management of its oil spill response plan, indicates that the marine reserve at Milford Sound appears not to have been adversely affected by the spill. With respect to the adverse impact on wildlife, immediate and follow up action have not revealed any issues of immediate concern and it is thought that there will not be long term threats. Furthermore, a thorough clean up operation has been completed with the support of the community.


The State Party informed the Centre that the Department of Conservation of the Government of New-Zealand and Environment Southland will carry out an investigation into the spill and management action will be taken to prevent the recurrence of such an accident.


Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN


Decision Adopted: 28 COM 15B.17

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Notes the information provided by the State Party concerning recent oil spill accident at Te Wahipounamu-South West New Zealand;

2. Requests the State Party to take all necessary measures to prevent such accidents occurring in the future.