State of Conservation (SOC)
Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve (1995)
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:168,000USD
|1988||Equipment for Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve||20,000 USD|
|1987||Consultant services, training and equipment for improving the ...||30,000 USD|
|1985||Strengthen protection and management of Rio Platano Biosphere ...||20,000 USD|
|1983||Implementation of protective measures, of training activities and ...||26,000 USD|
|1982||Financial contribution towards ecodevelopment programmes and ...||67,025 USD|
|1982||Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve||4,975 USD|
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Extreme pressure with the invasion of refugees and settlers into the Reserve;
- Illegal tree felling;
- Road construction
Current conservation issues
The Centre informed the Bureau that a report was received from the Fundación Río Plátano concerning the site, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1982. The report concerned the agricultural intrusion at the western border of the site. Additional information was obtained on 12 April 1995 on the land reform programme and its implementation in north-eastern Honduras. The settlement programme threatens several protected areas. The Centre contacted the authorities concerned to obtain further information and has received additional reports about shortcomings of the conservation of the site by the national government. The site is seriously threatened by planned and unplanned colonization having negative effects upon the indigenous cultures, unauthorized forest operations and poaching.
The Bureau asked IUCN to verify the situation and to report back to the World Heritage Committee in December. Subsequently, the Centre received a letter from the Minister for the Environment requesting a mission to the site to evaluate the situation. The Centre contacted IUCN to define the terms of reference for such a mission. At the time of the preparation of this document the mission was under preparation and IUCN will report to the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee.
On the basis of the report, the Bureau may reach the conclusion that the site is seriously threatened and may wish to recommend to the Committee that the site may be placed on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Link to the decision
VII.14 Rio Platano Biosphere Reserve (Honduras)
The Committee recalled that the Bureau at its nineteenth session took note of a report received from the Fundaci6n Rio Platano concerning the site, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1982. The report concerned the agricultural intrusion at the south and western borders of the site and on the land reform programme and its implementation in north-eastern Honduras. The Bureau at its nineteenth session requested IUCN to verify the situation and to report back to the nineteenth session of the World Heritage committee. Subsequently, the Centre received a letter from the Minister for the Environment requesting a mission to the site to evaluate the situation.
The mission was carried out by the IUCN Regional Office based in Costa Rica in November 1995. The report of the mission outlines the major threats and concludes with eleven follow-up actions, including the inscription of the site on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
The Committee took note of the report and requested the Centre to contact the authorities to obtain an official letter on the actions to be taken to protect the site.
The Bureau recommended that the full report be presented to the Committee by the representatives of IUCN before taking any decision.
View inscribed site documents, nomination file, reports, decisions, ...
SOC Reports2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2001 2000 1999 1998 1997 1996 1995 1991 1990 1989 1988
Detailed List of SOC reports
Inscription on the Danger ListYear: 2011
Threats to the Site:
a) Illegal logging;
b) Illegal occupation;
c) Reduced capacity of the State Party;
d) General deterioration of law and order and the security situation in the region.
Threats to the Site:
At both its 19th and 20th sessions, the World Heritage Committee heard reports of commercial and agricultural intrusions into the site, threatening the World Heritage values for which it had been inscribed. The advancing agricultural frontier at the west side of the reserve, pushed by small farmers and cattle ranchers, is already reducing the reserve's forest area. The southern and western zones of the Reserve are subject to massive extraction of precious wood such as Caoba (Swietenia macrophylla). Uncontrolled commercial hunting of wild animals is also practised. The introduction of exotic species is threatening to undermine the complex ecosystem of the Reserve. The absence of any management plan and the fact that there is almost no park staff to manage the 525,100 ha site has compounded the problem.
An eleven-point corrective action plan, recommended by a 1996 IUCN conservation status report, has been endorsed by the Minister for the Environment of Honduras and the elaboration of a management plan for Rio Platano is being carried out with a World Heritage Fund contribution, as part of a large-scale project for strengthening the conservation of the site financed by the German GTZ-KFW.
A hydroelectric development project, Patuca II, is currently proposed for implementation near the reserve with potential negative impacts on the site. According to reports, the Government is promoting the rapid implementation of this project. Matters are further complicated by the fact that communications with relevant authorities in Honduras have become difficult following recent damages caused to the country's infrastructure by Hurricane Mitch.
The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).