State of Conservation
Maya Site of Copan
Factors affecting the property in 1997*
- Management activities
- Management systems/ management plan
- Other Threats:
Attention to be paid to the conservation of stone and stuccos
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Conservation of stone and stuccos in need for special attention
- Need to redefine the boundaries of the Park
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1997
Requests approved: 9
Total amount approved : 177,538 USD
|1997||Preparation of a Replica of the Hieroglyphic Stairway ... (Approved)||29,613 USD|
|1997||Scientific seminar on the preservation of the ... (Approved)||8,800 USD|
|1990||Preservation of mural paintings recently discovered in ... (Approved)||7,000 USD|
|1983||Equipment, consultant services and support to training ... (Approved)||46,000 USD|
|1982||Technical mission and equipment for Copan Ruins (Approved)||24,050 USD|
|1982||Training activities foreseen in the management plan for ... (Approved)||28,950 USD|
|1982||2 specialists and equipment for Copan Ruins (Approved)||20,000 USD|
|1982||Financial contribution to the preparation, publication ... (Approved)||3,125 USD|
|1979||Provision of one expert to prepare a technical ... (Approved)||10,000 USD|
Missions to the property until 1997**
Information presented to the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee in 1997
The Bureau commended the Government of Honduras for the exemplary approach taken in studying the conservation problems at the Hieroglyphic Stairway at Copan with the aim to preserve the Stairway in-situ.
Action RequiredThe Bureau requested IHAH to keep the Committee informed on a regular basis of the progress made in this respect.
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1997
In July 1997, a scientific seminar took place at Copán to examine the state of conservation of the Hieroglyphic Stairway. This Stairway is one of the most important elements at Copán which justified the application of criterion (vi) at the time of its inscription. The Stairway has deteriorated considerably over the past hundred years and inappropriate interventions have been undertaken in the past.
As a result of the meeting, which was funded under the World Heritage Fund, a Task Force has been set up between the National Institute for Anthropology and History (IHAH), the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, the Getty Conservation Institute and the Smithsonian Institution. The Task Force will advise and assist in the implementation of a two-year monitoring and research programme with the aim to preserve the Stairway on its original location.
Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1997
Requests for international assistance
The Bureau examined Documents WHC-97/CONF. 204/4 and WHC-97/CONF.204/4.Add and made the following decisions:
Request approved by the Bureau:
International expert meeting on "World Heritage Convention as an International Instrument for Biodiversity Conservation in Tropical Forests", Brastagi, North Sumatra, Indonesia (March, 1998)
The Bureau approved an amount of US$ 30,000 for the above meeting and requested IUCN and the Centre to ensure that scientific information used in the preparation of, and discussions during the meeting, is used to deliver products that are directly beneficial to the operations of the World Heritage Convention.
Request recommended by the Bureau for approval by the Committee:
Support to Strengthening Protection of Kaziranga National Park (India)
The Bureau recommended that the Committee at its twenty-first session scheduled to convene from 1 to 6 December 1997 in Naples, Italy, approve a sum of US$ 50,000 as a contribution for 1997-98, to enable the construction of 10 guard posts (US$ 25,000) and 5 highland shelters (US$ 21,000) and the purchase of audio-visual equipment for the Interpretation Centre at Kohora (US$ 4,000).
Request approved by the Bureau:
Contribution to the implementation of an Emergency Rehabilitation Plan for Manas Wildlife Sanctuary (India)
The Bureau approved a sum of US$ 75,000 for enabling the purchase of 3 vehicles (US$ 30,000), 55 wireless communication sets (US$ 40,000) and 2 boats (US$ 5,000) for Manas Wildlife Sanctuary, a site included in the List of World Heritage in Danger since 1992.
The Bureau recommended that the Committee, at its twenty-first session scheduled to be convened in Naples, Italy, during 1-6 December 1997, review progress on the use of the US$ 75,000 approved by the Bureau and consider approving additional amounts of the total sum of US$ 235,000 requested by the Indian authorities as emergency assistance from the World Heritage Fund.
The Bureau requested that the Centre ensure that the counterpart contribution of US$ 1,185,000 expected to be provided, over a 2-3 year period, jointly by the Ministry of Environment and Forests (MOEF) of the Government of India (GOI) and the State of Government of Assam (SGA) are provided and used as described in the international assistance request for emergency assistance submitted by India.
Request not approved by the Bureau
Request for financial assistance (US$ 30,000) for training of an individual specialist from Ecuador in Masters in Natural Resources Administration at the Business Administration Central American Institute (INCAE), Costa Rica
The Bureau concluded that the training of a specialist over a 10-month period for a Masters programme did not conform with the "short-term refresher programmes and exchanges of experience" permitted for training individuals under paragraph 95 of the Operational Guidelines.
Hence, the Bureau decided not to approve this request.
Requests approved by the Bureau
Visitors’ Centre at Paphos, Cyprus (US$ 23,267)
The Bureau approved a sum of US$ 12,187, recommended by the World heritage Centre, of the US$ 23,267 requested by the State Party for a mission of two international experts to design the exhibition display of the Visitors’ Centre of the site.
The Bureau, however, noted that the amount of $ 12,187 for the experts’ mission was deemed too high and requested the Secretariat to apply the consultant rates conforming to those of UNESCO.
The Bureau, furthermore, agreed to the recommendation of ICOMOS that the State Party submit a separate request for the procurement of exhibition materials upon the identification of the needs and costs for the exhibition cases and the interior design by the expert mission.
Symposium on the Preservation of Contemporary Heritage: Case of Brasilia (Brazil) (US$ 30,000)
The Bureau approved the amount of US$ 30,000 requested by Brazil, on the condition that the State Party submits for the Chairperson’s approval, a more detailed description and budget breakdown of the activities to be financed by a contribution from the World Heritage Fund.
The Bureau supported the goals of this symposium, aimed at reviewing the experience acquired by the institutions involved in the preservation and management of Brasilia and to discuss and establish new general urban directives for the efficient preservation of Brasilia's heritage.
Preparation of a Replica of the Hieroglyphic Stairway of the Maya Site of Copan (Honduras) (US$ 29,613)
The Bureau approved US$ 29,613 requested by the State Party for the preparation of the replica before further deterioration of the Hieroglyphic Stairway.
Request recommended by the Bureau for approval by the Committee
Special Course on the World Heritage Convention (Mexico) (US$ 30,000)
In view of the recommendations of ICOMOS, IUCN and ICCROM, and upon considering paragraph 106(b) of the Operational Guidelines which states that requests from members of the Bureau can only be decided by the Committee, the Bureau recommended approval by the Committee of the requested amount of US$ 30,000.
The Bureau, however, agreed to the suggestions of ICCROM to place this special course within the context of the regional training strategy adopted by the Committee, and to IUCN’s recommendation to ensure a balanced participation of natural and cultural heritage experts, and better define the target audience of the course.
Requests for carry-over in 1997 from the Reserve Fund for prior-year Approvals
Joya de Ceren Archaeological Site (El Salvador)
The Bureau agreed that the balance of US$ 14,750 of a technical cooperation activity for Joya de Ceren (US$ 25,000) approved by the Committee in 1994 be charged against the Reserve Fund in order to enable the implementation of the international seminar at the site from 7 to 11 July 1997.
Exhibition on "From Abu-Simbel to Angkor"
The Bureau agreed to charging the unobligated balance of US$ 39,741 against the Reserve Fund.
Reports on the state of conservation of cultural properties noted by the Committee
VII.55 The Committee noted the decisions of the twenty-first extraordinary session of the Bureau on the following cultural properties as reflected in the report of the Bureau session, Working Documents WHC-97/CONF.208/4B Section III.C.c):
Joya de Ceren Archaeological Site (El Salvador)
Le Canal du Midi (France)
Mont-Saint-Michel and its Bay (France)
Ashanti Traditional Buildings (Ghana)
Maya Site of Copan (Honduras)
Agra Fort, Taj Mahal, Fatehpur Sikri (India)
Quseir Amra (Jordan)
Town of Luang Prabang (Lao People's Democratic Republic)
Pre-Hispanic City of Teotihuacan (Mexico)
Ilha de Mozambique (Mozambique)
Baroque Churches of the Philippines (Philippines)
Old Town of Segovia and its Aqueduct (Spain)
Cultural World Heritage sites in Sri Lanka
Ancient City of Damascus (Syrian Arab Republic)
Historic Areas of Istanbul (Turkey)
Itchan Kala, Historic Centre of Bukhara (Uzbekistan)
Shibam and Zabid (Yemen).
The Bureau may wish to adopt the following text and transmit it to the Committee for noting:
"The Bureau commends the Government of Honduras for the exemplary approach taken in studying the conservation problems at the Hieroglyphic Stairway at Copán with the aim to preserve the Stairway in-situ. The Bureau requests IHAH to keep the Committee informed on a regular basis of the progress made in this respect."
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”).