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Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves

Niger
Factors affecting the property in 1997*
  • Illegal activities
  • Other Threats:

    Decline in wildlife populations

Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Armed conflic (issue resolved);
  • Poaching
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1997
Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved : 0 USD
Information presented to the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee in 1997

Recalling the peace agreement, signed on 20 April 1995, which had started a dialogue between the conflicting parties and set in motion the process for a return to a normal management regime, the Committee, at its last session (Merida, 1996), noted that a detailed site-evaluation and the development of an action programme for site-recovery may become feasible in the near future. The Committee learnt of the possible resumption of an IUCN/WWF project, with funding from DANIDA, for re-establishing the normal management regime for the site.

By letter of 20 March 1997, the Permanent Delegation of Niger has provided the terms of reference for a monitoring mission to the site which has been transmitted to IUCN for comments. IUCN is expected to report on the findings of an IUCN/WWF mission to the site at the time of the Bureau meeting.

Action Required

The Bureau may wish to examine the report that is expected to be provided by IUCN with a view to advising the Committee on the current status of Air-and-Tenere, future plans for its recovery and whether or not it should be retained in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1997

At its last session (Merida, 1996), the Committee had noted that a Peace Agreement signed on 20 April 1995 had allowed for a detailed evaluation of the state of conservation of the site and the development of an action programme. The Bureau, at its twenty-first session, in June 1997, was informed of the findings of a site-visit undertaken by CNRS/EHESS and the staff of the local IUCN Office. The Bureau noted that there were no security problems in the area, decline in wildlife populations was noticeable and that an analysis of the Reserve's situation, by a team including a competent ecologist, was needed. Furthermore, that a proposal to establish a 24 million ha Biosphere Reserve, with the World Heritage site forming the core, and parts of the buffer zones, had been favourably recommended to the MAB Bureau for inclusion in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves. The Delegate of Niger, present at the Bureau session, was of the view that the state of conservation of the site had considerably improved and the site may be removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger. A mission to the site is foreseen in the autumn of 1997.

Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 1997

The Committee may wish to review information which may become available at the time of its session and decide whether Air and Ténéré needs to be retained in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1997
21 BUR IV.A.10
Air-and-Ténéré Reserve (Niger)

The Bureau recalled that a peace agreement, signed on 20 April 1995, had started a dialogue between the conflicting parties and set in motion the process for a return to a normal management regime and that the Committee at its twentieth session had noted that a detailed site evaluation and the development of an action programme for site recovery may become feasible in the near future. The IUCN/WWF project, with funding from DANIDA, for re-establishing a normal management regime for the site is soon to be resumed.

By letter of 20 March 1997, the Permanent Delegation of Niger has provided the terms of reference for a monitoring mission to the site, expected to be carried out in the autumn of 1997. The Bureau heard a presentation by Mr. André Bourgeot (CNRS/EHESS, France) who had carried out a mission to the site in April 1997 together with local IUCN staff. He indicated that: (a) there were no security problems in the area; (b) the vegetation is less impacted than the wildlife populations, whose decline was noticeable; and (c) an analysis of the Reserve's situation should be undertaken by a team including a competent specialist in ecology. The Bureau noted that the proposal to establish an Air-and-Ténéré Biosphere Reserve covering 24 million hectares was favourably recommended to the MAB Bureau for inscription on the World Network of Biosphere Reserves. The Delegate of Niger informed the Bureau that this Biosphere Reserve would reach as far as the Algerian border and constitute a huge wildlife reserve with the World Heritage site as core area and buffer zone. The Delegate of Niger thanked Mr. Bourgeot for his report and commended IUCN for their efforts to support the conservation of the site. Furthermore, he was of the view that the state of conservation of the site has improved considerably and the site might be removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger.

The Bureau recommended that the Committee at its forthcoming session review the status of Air-and-Ténéré, future plans for its continuing recovery and decide whether or not it should be removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger.

21 COM VII.B.20/22
SOC: Air-and-Ténéré Reserve (Niger)

VII.20 Air-and-Ténéré Reserve (Niger)

The Committee recalled that the Delegate of Niger, at the twenty-first session of the Bureau, was of the view that the state of conservation of the site had considerably improved and the site may be removed from the List of World Heritage in Danger and that a monitoring mission to the site was foreseen for autumn 1997. The Centre informed the Committee that this mission did not take place due to time constraints. IUCN informed the Committee that a number of activities are underway to resume the IUCN/Danish/Swiss Cooperation project at this site.

In the absence of further information, the Committee decided to retain Air-and-Ténéré Reserve in the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Report year: 1997
Niger
Date of Inscription: 1991
Category: Natural
Criteria: (vii)(ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 1992-present
Exports

* : 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”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.


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