State of Conservation (SOC)
Virgin Komi Forests (1998)
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:0USD
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Gold mine project
Current conservation issues
At its twenty-first extraordinary session, the Bureau had expressed its serious concerns over a proposed gold mining project in this site and requested detailed information on the project, including any environmental impact studies that may have been carried out. At its twenty-second session, the Bureau noted that letters from different Federal and State Level authorities seem to imply that changes to the boundaries of the World Heritage site were under consideration and that the gold mining project may have been suspended. Hence, the Bureau urged the State Party to provide to the Centre, full information on any proposal to change the borders of the site, and confirm whether the gold mining project had been withdrawn. IUCN has informed the Centre that following a Federal Government inspection of the site in the context of the proposed gold mining activities, the local authorities were ordered to cancel all activities related to mining. However, the Government of the Komi Republic is taking legal action against this Federal Government Order and the Duma is in the process of considering a law, despite objections from the State Committee on Ecology, which would allow mining in Russia’s national parks.
The Russian State Committee for the Environment informed the Centre on 17 November 1998 that the site is under regular inspections from the State Committee and that the last inspection was carried out in June/July 1998. It revealed violations of the national legislation by enterprises specialised in gold mining on the site. All companies were given orders to suspend their illegal activities. The administration of the Yugyd Va National Park was obliged to register all affected lands and to prepare a land re-cultivation programme. IUCN informed the Bureau that WWF is carrying out a five Million Swiss Franc project for the conservation of the site.
The Bureau commended the Russian authorities on the actions taken to halt the mining activities at Virgin Komi Forests, and WWF for initiating a conservation project. The Bureau invited the State Party to provide a report on the rehabilitation of impacted areas. Furthermore, the Bureau requested the Centre and IUCN to contact the authorities in the Komi Republic to discuss any boundary issues relevant to the Virgin Komi Forests.
Link to the decision
VII.27 The Committee noted the decisions of the twenty-second extraordinary session of the Bureau as reflected in the Report of the Bureau session (Working Document WHC-98/CONF.203/5) and included in Annex IV on the following properties:
Heard and McDonald Islands (Australia)
Shark Bay, Western Australia (Australia)
Wet Tropics of Queensland (Australia)
Belovezhskaya Pushcha/Bialowieza Forest (Belarus/Poland)
Iguacu National Park (Brazil)
Dja Faunal Reserve (Cameroon)
Canadian Rocky Mountain Parks (Canada)
Jiuzhaigou Valley Scenic and Historic Interest Area (China)
Huanglong Scenic and Historic Interest Area (China)
Wulingyuan Scenic and Historic Interest Area (China)
Los Katios National Park (Colombia)
Morne Trois Pitons National Park (Dominica)
Nanda Devi National Park (India)
Whale Sanctuary of El Viscaino (Mexico)
Royal Chitwan National Park (Nepal)
Sagarmatha National Park (Nepal)
Arabian Oryx Sanctuary (Oman)
Huascaran National Park (Peru)
Huascaran National Park (Peru)
Kamchatka Volcanoes (Russian Federation)
Virgin Komi Forests (Russian Federation)
Skocjan Caves (Slovenia)
Thung Yai-Huay Kha Khaeng Wildlife Sanctuaries (Thailand)
St. Kilda (United Kingdom)
Ha Long Bay (Vietnam)
Durmitor National Park (Federal Republic of Yugoslavia)
The Committee noted the UN official name for the State Party: Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.
Mosi-oa-Tunya/Victoria Falls (Zambia/Zimbabwe)
No draft Decision
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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”).