1.         Lorentz National Park (Indonesia) (N 955)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1999

Criteria  (viii)(ix)(x)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/955/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0 (from 1996-2001)
Total amount approved: USD 41,400
For details, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/955/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

2004: IUCN mission; 2008: UNESCO/IUCN Joint Reactive Monitoring Mission; 2011: UNESCO/IUCN Joint Reactive Monitoring Mission; 2014 IUCN Mission

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Illustrative material  see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/955/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2014

At its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013), the Committee requested the State Party to submit a report on the state of conservation of the property by 1 February 2015, and to invite an IUCN reactive monitoring mission to assess the impacts from road construction and to assist the State Party with developing a conservation strategy that will ensure the conservation and strict protection of the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), the report of which would be for examination by the Committee at its 38th session in 2014. The mission to Jakarta and the Provincial capital Jayapura took place from 11 to 18 March 2014. Its report is available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/955/documents/. A field visit was not included, due to security concerns.

While recognizing the significant effort by the State Party to improve the management of the property, including through a 65% increase in the property’s management budget over the past three years, the finalization of a Collaborative Management Agreement, and an increase in staff capacity, the mission considers that management capacity and effectiveness remain insufficient. The main concerns in that regard are noted to be as follows, among others:

The mission further reported as follows:

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN

The State Party has made efforts to address some of the identified issues, in particular to improve management capacity and its commitment to apply the highest standards to the EIA of the Habema-Kenyem road and to mitigate the impacts from the road and restore damaged areas. The recent development of a Collaborative Management Agreement is welcomed, and it is recommended that the Committee encourage the State Party to formalize this agreement.

The mission considered that despite the known impacts of the Habema-Kenyem road, and notwithstanding the limited recent scientific field survey activities, the OUV of the property remains intact, mainly due to its large scale (2.35 million ha), remoteness, difficult terrain and relative absence of roads. However, it is critical that there is no further development of infrastructure or other development pressure anywhere in the property.

As noted by the mission, the low management effectiveness of the property, while improving, remains a significant concern for its future protection. If the property’s management cannot be significantly improved in the short term, its OUV and conditions of integrity are likely to become increasingly threatened. It is recommended that the Committeeurge the State Party to further increase the number of forest rangers available to the property, as well as the level of funding, including by seeking more national and international partnerships in support of the property, including with the private sector. It is also recommended that the Committeerequest the State Party to urgently revise the management plan and zonation scheme for the property in order to ensure that these adequately reflect its OUV. Furthermore, the State Party’s commitment to mitigate the impacts of the Habema-Kenyem road through managerial measures should include the development and implementation of an integrated monitoring mechanism in order to ensure early detection of and response to emerging threats, such as poaching, illegal logging, and the establishment of illegal settlements.

It is recognized that roads may bring economic and social benefits to small isolated indigenous communities in the property. However, it should be noted that roads can result in many secondary impacts on conservation values. There is significant concern that the construction of the Habema-Kenyem road has continued for 90 km since the 2011 mission, despite the Committee’s request in Decision 35 COM 7B.15 to cease all road construction. The current stop on construction works is well noted, and it is crucial that construction works do not continue prior to a rigorous EIA having been completed, including a specific assessment of direct and indirect impacts on the property’s OUV, in conformity with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment. If effective monitoring and strict control of the road and its impacts, and of any future development pressures, cannot be guaranteed, the danger to the property’s OUV is likely to increase to the point where the property could meet the criteria for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

It is further recommended that the Committee urge the State Party to conduct further investigations to the cause of the Nothofagus dieback disease and to the level of poaching in the property.

Decision Adopted: 38 COM 7B.67

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-14/38.COM/7B.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 37 COM 7B.13, adopted at its 37th session (Phnom Penh, 2013),
  3. Notes with appreciation the State Party’s efforts to improve the property’s management capacity, and welcomes the State Party’s commitment, as expressed during the mission, to apply the highest standards to the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the Habema-Kenyem road;
  4. Notes with concern that despite the absence of an EIA, significant road construction has been allowed to continue until recently;
  5. Requests the State Party to rigorously ensure that the current halt imposed on further road construction remains in place until the EIA has been completed, in conformity with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment and its recommendations fully implemented, and adequate technological and managerial measures are being implemented to avoid and mitigate impacts of the road on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), including the development and implementation of an integrated monitoring mechanism to detect and respond to threats as soon as they arise;
  6. Also requests the State Party to submit the completed EIA to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, in accordance with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines ;
  7. Urges the State Party to guarantee effective monitoring and strict control of the road and its impact and control of any future development pressures, related or not to the presence of the road, and considers that if this cannot be achieved, the property could meet, in the near future, the conditions for inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger, and reiterates its request to the State Party to rigorously ensure the protection and conservation of the property’s OUV and prevent the fragmentation of the largely intact wilderness that makes up the property;
  8. Further requests the State Party to urgently revise the property’s management plan and zonation scheme, in order to ensure that they adequately reflect the property’s OUV, and to provide an electronic and three printed copies of the draft revised management plan and zonation scheme to the World Heritage Centre as soon as it is available, for review by IUCN;
  9. Also urges the State Party to undertake an assessment of the level of poaching in the property, and to conduct further in-depth investigations to the cause of the Nothofagus dieback disease, including an assessment of the health of all Nothofagus forests in the property as well as an action plan to address the dieback, in collaboration with international experts, as required;
  10. Requests furthermore the State Party to fully implement all the recommendations of the 2014 IUCN reactive monitoring mission;
  11. Reiterates its call upon the international community to support the State Party in resolving the severe constraints to the effective operation of the Park management including funding, limited monitoring and surveillance equipment, and limited staff capacity and technical expertise;
  12. Requests moreover the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2015, a report, including a 1-page executive summary, on the state of conservation of the property and on progress achieved with the implementation of the recommendations of the 2008, 2011, and 2014 reactive monitoring missions, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 39th session in 2015.