State of Conservation (SOC)
Sian Ka'an (2003)
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds
International Assistance granted to the property
Total Amount Ap proved:0USD
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
- Tourism development
- Land use
Current conservation issues
IUCN received a copy of a report from the Reserve’s authorities on coastal development in the site, dated 31 January 2003. The report indicates that six projects have been submitted for building residential or lodging facilities on private properties since April 2002. These projects that have been developed according to the Coastal Development Plan’s criteria, are currently under review, including the environmental impact assessments. The proposals also include the establishment of sewage systems to minimize environmental impacts.
A second report has also been received from the State Party, which relates to the Management Plan for the coastal zone of the Sian Ka’an Biosphere Reserve and the potential impacts on the site derived from the suspension of a moratorium on construction. The report stressed that the Management Plan of the site, adopted in 2002, should help to guide territorial planning for new constructions.
IUCN notes that the removal of the moratorium on construction is in accordance with the newly accepted Management Plan. The report provides the exact numbers of hotel rooms that could be built in each of the three zones of the Reserve, emphasizing the property’s carrying capacity. The removal of the moratorium will help to increase the number of jobs, but at the same time will increase pressure on land use, and result in greater potential for incompatible activities such as increased sport and commercial fishing, thus putting greater pressure on the ecosystem in general.
Link to the decision
The World Heritage Committee ,
1. Noting that the State Party has removed the moratorium on construction within the property, and that this action is in accordance with the newly adopted management plan for the property, strictly limiting the total number of hotel rooms to be built in the reserve,
2. Invites the State Party to ensure strict adherence to the management plan and to carry out systematic environmental monitoring to detect and, if necessary, remedy any possible negative effects on the ecosystem of the property from the development;
3. Requests the State Party to provide a report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2004 in order that the World Heritage Committee can examine the state of conservation of the property at its 28th session in 2004.
 Decision adopted without discussion.
Draft Decision: 27 COM 7 (b) 26
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Noting that the State Party has removed the moratorium on construction within the site, and that this action is in accordance with the newly adopted management plan for the site, strictly limiting the total number of hotel rooms to be built in the reserve,
2. Invites the State Party to ensure strict adherence to the management plan and to carry out systematic environmental monitoring to detect and, if necessary, remedy any possible negative effects on the site ecosystem from the development,
3. Requests the State Party to provide a report by 1 February 2004 for review by its 28th session.
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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”).