1.         Chan Chan Archaeological Zone (Peru) (C 366)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1986

Criteria  (i)(iii)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger    1986-present

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/366/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1987-1998)
Total amount approved: USD 118,700
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/366/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds


Previous monitoring missions

2002: World Heritage Centre mission to the site

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/366/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2003


The State Party did not transmit the requested report. However, it transmitted the Section II of the Periodical Report, which includes updated information on the legal actions foreseen. The draft legislation, which declares the site of Chan-Chan in state of emergency and offers a solution to re-settle the farmers, is still pending (Draft Legislation n° 3807). It includes a redefinition of the limits of the site.  Financial problems obliged the State Party to postpone the implementation of the actions foreseen under the management plan. In addition, the Secretariat received on 4 April 2003, updated information on the last results of the ongoing research and the measures that need to be taken in the near future to avoid further structural damage.

El Niño, as well as the rise of the groundwater level, are damaging the basis of the structures (huanchaques). The November 2000 monitoring results of the 68 wells showed a slight rise of the water level. Since August 2002, a progressive rise of the water has been registered, and it increased in January 2003 by 60% in comparison with December 2002, reaching alarming levels. This phenomenon is due to: - the 1998-99 Niño; - the change in the irrigation technology for extensive mono-cultures in the area; - the reduction by 46% of the use of water, as the local population now obtains the water from a new system provided by the Chavimochic Plan. The following actions require urgent attention: the completion of the topographical registration of the site and national and international co-operation to assist in halting – with lasting solutions – of the rise in the water level. During a World Heritage Centre mission to the site, the site manager requested an international workshop to address this matter. 

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and ICCROM


Decision Adopted: 27 COM 7A.28

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Taking note of the measures and the studies undertaken by the State Party to protect the property,;

2. Commending the State Party for the efforts made to monitor the water level;

3. Urges the State Party to adopt the draft legislation foreseen;

4. Strongly recommends that the State Party defines the limits of the property in order to avoid further encroachment;

5. Recommends that the State Party reviews the system of water canalisation, water distribution and considers requesting international assistance under the World Heritage Fund to identify the appropriate remedial measures; 

6. Requests the State Party to submit a report to the World Heritage Centre by 1 February 2004, on the progress made in implementing the above-mentioned measures, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 28th session in 2004;

7. Decides to retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decision Adopted: 27 COM 8B.2

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Following examination of state of conservation reports of properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC-03/27.COM/7A),;

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