Following the joint IUCN/UNESCO mission to the site which took place from 17 to 21 May 2004, an update of the situation and revised recommendations are provided below in addition to the state of conservation report in document WHC-04/28.COM/15B. The mission identified a total of 13 key issues and provided detailed recommendations on each of these issues:
(a) Salmon poaching: Improved coordination of activities among the agencies concerned, including monitoring, regulation and law enforcement is required; including enhancing staffing levels, ensuring that staff are empowered to take action against poachers, and increasing the penalties for those convicted of poaching.
(b) Mining: The International Council on Mining & Metals (ICMM) policy statement on mining and World Heritage should be applied to any mining operations on the Kamchatka Peninsula; appropriate environmental impact assessments (EIA) for any mines and associated infrastructure prior to any work have to be undertaken; any mining operations outside the World Heritage area should operate according to best mining practice and latest technology; the State Party also should require all mining companies operating in the vicinity of the World Heritage property to collaborate fully with the park authority; and the boundaries of the World Heritage area should not be changed purely to accommodate mining potential.
(c) Gas pipeline (and potential oil and gas exploration): careful monitoring is required of the impact of the pipeline on the World Heritage property; and ensure that the construction of the pipeline comply with any provisions which mitigate impact on spawning rivers.
(d) Geothermal powerplant: EIAs should take into account the World Heritage value and any potential threats to the site.
(e) Hunting: the Kamchatka Regional Government should progressively phase out the hunting concessions in Nalychevo Zakaznik to avoid conflicts with increasing tourism access and development. It is also necessary to improve staffing, resourcing, procedures and inter-agency coordination to ensure compliance with trophy hunting licenses.
(f) Staffing and funding: the State Party should be commended for improving the staff and budgets in recent years. Nevertheless it is urged to continue to increase the reported funding and staff levels for the reserve. This is important to ensure the State Party operates as an equal partner in financing the management of the property with international donor support.
(g) Roads: an effective monitoring and control programme should be implemented without delay; inspection stations need to be established to check poaching; best possible standards of road construction and maintenance have to be applied; and no subsidiary roads should be constructed.
(h) Tourism: careful development of ecotourism opportunities could balance the protection of the site’s outstanding universal value with the great potential for year round tourism in and around the World Heritage areas. Ecotourism should become a viable and long term income generator for the site. The collaborative approach advocated within the UNEP/GEF/IUCN Ecotourism Development Programme for Kamchatka should be extended to all the reserves within the World Heritage property; Further strengthening the partnership with the private sector could enhance tourism benefits for the parks.
(i) Management planning and coordination: the completion of management plans for the two outstanding reserves within the World Heritage property should be encouraged. The finalized management plans should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre and IUCN for information; consideration should be given to further strengthening cooperation between the two federal and the four regional parks, which form the World Heritage property.
(j) Boundaries:any decision on boundary adjustment, revision of boundaries or extensions should be conditional on a detailed review of the values for which the site was inscribed. The boundaries of the World Heritage property should be marked on the ground, with priority given to those areas with greatest public access.
(k) Legislative framework for management: The State Party should ensure that due legal processes are expedited.
(l) Integrated conservation and development planning for the Peninsula: the State Party is also encouraged to support integrated development and conservation planning to ensure balanced land-use decisions on the Kamchatka Peninsula. The management of the World Heritage property should be placed within the broader landscape context and in recognition of the Peninsula’s economic and social issues.
(m) Other issues (forest fires, logging and timber concessions, and relations with indigenous people):research should be encouraged to better understand the natural fire patterns and regimes to ensure that these processes remain undisturbed and that human induced fires are actively suppressed;
The State Party should ensure greater communication and coordination between park authorities at both Federal and Regional levels and the Forest Service of the Ministry of Natural Resources operating in Kamchatka and exercise every effort to ensure that the World Heritage site is managed together with indigenous people and local populations.
The mission concluded that the Volcanoes of Kamchatka is a vast site of exceptional natural beauty and diversity and that the outstanding universal value for which the World Heritage site was inscribed is being maintained, however, emerging issues have great potential to threaten the site. The State Party needs to ensure that these issues are addressed at an early stage to guarantee the integrity of the site and apply the highest possible standards of care, control and management.