1.         Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Niger) (N 573)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1991

Criteria  (vii)(ix)(x)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    1992-present

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/573/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1999-2002)
Total amount approved: USD 142,450
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/573/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions

1998 UNESCO mission.

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Political instability and civil strife, management constraints, ostrich poaching.

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/573/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2005

During its 28th session (Suzhou, 2004), the Committee reiterated its concern that no report had been provided on the theft of the vehicles financed under the World Heritage Fund and on the implementation of the rehabilitation plan for the property. The State Party addressed a letter to the World Heritage Centre on 7 December 2004, with a copy of the report prepared by the Ministry for National Defence of Niger, in which it was stipulated in particular that the vehicles had been stolen from their legal owners, on 19 March 2002, following an armed assault. No report was provided on the state of conservation of the property.

The mission requested by the Committee at its 27th session (UNESCO, 2003) to evaluate the implementation of the rehabilitation plan had had to be postponed because of organisational difficulties and security reasons. At the time of preparation of this document, the World Heritage Centre and IUCN are organising this evaluation mission, in cooperation with the State Party. The outcome of this mission, which should take place before the 29th session, will be presented during the Committee session, and a revised draft decision could be proposed to take account of the conclusions.

Furthermore, IUCN and the State Party are collaborating on the implementation of the project financed by the Global Environment Facility, which focuses on the Aïr and Tenéré Natural Reserves (RNNAT) and its associated areas (Tabelote, Timia, Tintelous and Iférouane), constituting 20 million hectares of the Biosphere Reserve, including the seven million hectares of the World Heritage site. The current preparatory phase of the project proposes a 12-year project focused on halting the degradation of Saharan ecosystem lands of the northern part of Niger through an integrated local development and decentralisation process.

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN


Decision Adopted: 29 COM 7A.6

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-05/29.COM/7A and the Draft Decision 29 COM 7A.6.Rev,

2. Recalling Decision 28 COM 15A.6 adopted at its 28th session (Suzhou, 2004), as well as Decision 27 COM 7A.5 adopted at its 27th session (UNESCO, 2003),

3. Taking note of the report of the 2005 IUCN monitoring mission, presented by IUCN during the 29th session (Durban, 2005),

4. Notes the information in the report provided by the State Party concerning the stolen vehicles;

5. Expresses its utmost concern over the findings of the 2005 IUCN monitoring mission, in particular the continuing deterioration of the World Heritage value of the property, the on-going poaching of wildlife, land degradation as a result of significant commercial extractions of natural resources, as well as a lack of progress in the implementation of the rehabilitation plan;

6. Encourages the State Party of Niger and UNDP/GEF to expedite the approval and implementation of the project “Co-management of Natural Resources in Aïr and Ténéré Natural Reserves and adjacent areas” (COGERAT);

7. Urges the State Party to implement the recommendations by the 2005 IUCN monitoring mission, with a view to addressing urgent threats to the property, in particular:

a) re-establish physical presence of the management authority in Iférouane and provide adequate resources to the management authority in order to allow a better control of natural resource use within the property;

b) establish Land Commissions (Commissions foncières) in the four Municipalities and clarify respective land-use and resource access rights for local residents;

c) significantly improve monitoring and surveillance of the property in order to address poaching and illegal commercial natural resource extraction issues;

d) immediately halt all commercial collection of timber and hay from the property; and

e) initiate soil and vegetation stabilization actions to control soil erosion, and measures to reduce corollary destabilization of soils by motorized traffic;

8. Requests the State Party to submit by 1 February 2006 a report on the state of conservation of the property and on progress in the implementation of the recommendations of the 2005 monitoring mission, for examination by the Committee at its 30th session (Vilnius, 2006);

9. Decides to retain the Aïr and Tenéré Natural Reserves (Niger) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decision Adopted: 29 COM 8C.2

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined the of state of conservation reports of properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-05/29.COM/7A and WHC-05/29.COM/7A.Add),

2. Decides to maintain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger: