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World Heritage Convention

Decision 43 COM 7B.25
Talamanca Range-La Amistad Reserves / La Amistad National Park (Costa Rica, Panama) (N 205bis)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/19/43.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 41 COM 7B.13, adopted at its 41st session (Krakow, 2017),
  3. Welcomes the States Parties’ ongoing efforts to combat illegal activities within the property, to strengthen institutional arrangements towards better bilateral cooperation and management, and to update the Management Plan in both countries;
  4. Takes note with satisfaction that the construction project of the Changuinola II (CHAN II) dam has not been re-activated to date, but also regrets that the State Party of Panama did not provide definitive information regarding the status of the project, and also reiterates its request to the State Party of Panama to confirm whether the contract has been cancelled and to clarify whether plans for this hydropower project have been abandoned;
  5. Noting with appreciation the completion of the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) for the Panamanian part of the property and the initiation of the process for the Costa Rican part, however regrets that the SEA for the entire property was not completed in 2018 as requested by the Committee and requests the States Parties to finalize the SEA for the entire property in 2019 and submit it to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, as soon as it becomes available;
  6. Also recalling Decision 40 COM 7 (Paragraph 17), adopted at its 40th session in 2016, reiterates its position that any development of new hydropower projects prior to the finalization and review by IUCN of the SEA for the entire property would represent a danger to the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property in line with Paragraph 180 of the Operational Guidelines, and would lead to its inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger;
  7. Noting the efforts of the State Party of Panama to monitor activities of the CHAN I dam and the Bonyic dam, reiterates its request to the State Party to continue these efforts and to establish long-term monitoring programmes for the projects to evaluate the effectiveness of the mitigation measures, and to ensure that the results of this monitoring are taken into account when finalizing the overall SEA for the entire property;
  8. Also requests the States Parties to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2020, an updated joint report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 45th session in 2021.
Decisions adopted during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee (Baku, 2019)
Context of Decision