Take advantage of the search to browse through the World Heritage Centre information.

Capacity Building
Credibility of the World Heritage ...
Inscriptions on the World Heritage ...
International Assistance
List of World Heritage in Danger
Operational Guidelines
Outstanding Universal Value
Periodic Reporting
Reinforced Monitoring
Tentative Lists
Working methods and tools
World Heritage Convention

Decision 39 COM 7B.18
Wood Buffalo National Park (Canada) (N 256)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Notes that the World Heritage Centre has received a petition submitted by the Mikisew Cree First Nation expressing their concern about the state of conservation of the property, as well as a response from the State Party;
  3. Notes with concern the environmental impacts on the Peace-Athabasca Delta from hydro-electric dams, oil sands development, and proposed open-pit mining in the vicinity of the property, which could negatively impact its Outstanding Universal Value (OUV);
  4. Also notes with concern the lack of engagement with indigenous communities in monitoring activities, as well as insufficient consideration of traditional ecological knowledge, and takes note of the State Party’s three commitments to strengthen monitoring and management with a wide participatory approach in order to address the concerns raised by the Mikisew Cree First Nation;
  5. Requests the State Party to undertake a Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) to assess the potential cumulative impacts of all developments on the OUV of the property, including hydroelectric dams, oil sands development, and mining, in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment;
  6. Also requests the State Party not to take any decision related to any of these development projects that would be difficult to reverse, and to submit the SEA to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Further requests the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission to review the impact of the developments on the property, to evaluate its state of conservation, and to exchange in more depth with the State Party, petitioning First Nation, and other stakeholders as appropriate;
  8. Requests moreover the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2016, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017.
Decision Code
39 COM 7B.18
States Parties 1
State of conservation reports
2015 Wood Buffalo National Park
Decisions adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015)
Context of Decision