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Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra

Indonesia
Factors affecting the property in 2016*
  • Governance
  • Ground transport infrastructure
  • Illegal activities
  • Land conversion
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Road construction
  • Agricultural encroachment
  • Illegal logging
  • Poaching
  • Institutional and governance weaknesses
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger
  • Road construction
  • Mining
  • Illegal logging
  • Encroachment
Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger
Corrective Measures for the property
Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures
UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2016

Total amount granted: USD 1,800,000 for the 3-year UNF/UNFIP Project (2005-2007) – Partnership for the Conservation of Sumatra Natural Heritage; USD 35,000 Rapid Response Facility grant (2007); USD 30,000 International Assistance for development of Emergency Action Plan (2012)

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2016
Requests approved: 2 (from 2005-2012)
Total amount approved : 96,600 USD
Missions to the property until 2016**

February-March 2006: UNESCO/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission; March 2007: World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission; February 2009: World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission; April 2011: World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission; October 2013: IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2016

On 26 January 2016, the State Party submitted a state of conservation report, which is available at https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/1167/documents/. Efforts towards achieving the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR) are presented as follows:

  • Analysis of satellite imagery to monitor forest cover is scheduled for a period of five years;
  • Population trend data are provided for tiger and elephant;
  • The Ministry of Environment and Forestry and the Ministry of Public Works agree to avoid any new road developments within the property;
  • No mining concessions or exploration permits exist within the property. All illegal traditional mining sites within Kerinci Seblat National Park (KSNP) have been closed, and 30,370 ha of the park have been rehabilitated;
  • Efforts to maintain and reconstruct the borders of Gunung Leuser National Park (GLNP) are undertaken in cooperation with local authorities and local communities;
  • Efforts to improve law enforcement include joint patrols involving local communities, police and the army, elimination of illegal plantations, establishment of a communication forum for law enforcement and Protection Assistance for Wildlife Security (PAWS) training at Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park (BBSNP). In 2015, 43 people were detained on suspicion of forest crimes committed at GLNP. A total of 105 ha of illegal agricultural activities in GLNP were eliminated. Five cases of illegal species trafficking were recorded from KSNP and BBSNP;
  • Various activities are undertaken to manage the wider landscape of the property, including among others the designation of buffer zones.

Information on the issues raised by the Committee at its previous sessions is also provided, as follows:

  • The geothermal development license adjacent to BBSNP is currently in its exploration phase, which will last until 2019. An Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) will be undertaken prior to any exploitation;
  • Various preliminary studies have been undertaken to support the development of the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) requested by the Committee in Decision 36 COM 7A.13. The draft SEA is expected to be available for stakeholder consultation by end 2016;
  • The State Party confirms its commitment that the Aceh Spatial Plan will not have any negative impact on the property and key areas in the Leuser Ecosystem;
Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2016

The commitment to avoid road construction within the property is welcome, as are the confirmation that no mining permits overlapping the property exist and the reported closure of all illegal traditional mining sites in KSNP. The scheduled analysis of satellite imagery to monitor forest cover should enable the State Party to provide more detail on progress towards achieving the relevant indicator of the DSOCR in the next two years, as foreseen in the Emergency Action Plan (EAP). The State Party’s intention to undertake an EIA for the geothermal development license adjacent to BBSNP is also welcome, and it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party to ensure that this EIA includes a specific assessment of impacts on Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, and to provide a copy to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, prior to making any decision to approve the development. Progress on the development of the SEA is noted, and it is recommended that the Committee reiterate its request to the State Party to submit it to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, for review by IUCN.

On 21 April 2016, a press release from the Ministry of Environment and Forestry (MoEF) noted that an immediate moratorium on palm oil and mining in the Leuser Ecosystem was declared by MoEF and the Aceh provincial government on 19 April 2016, and that a review of all palm oil and mining licenses in the Leuser Ecosystem will be conducted, which will consider key wildlife habitats among other aspects. A temporary suspension of all land clearing operations by palm oil and mining companies in the Leuser Ecosystem will be put into effect while the review is ongoing. This information was further confirmed by the State Party in a letter to the World Heritage Centre dated 20 May 2016. It is recommended that the Committee commend the State Party for its commitment to secure the Leuser Ecosystem, and that it encourage the State Party to seek the advice of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN to identify the areas in the Leuser Ecosystem that are crucially important to ensure the integrity of the property. In that regard, the designation of buffer zones should include key areas for wildlife in the Leuser Ecosystem and ecological corridors that connect these areas with the property to ensure that these are legally protected.

The data provided on wildlife populations does not enable an evaluation of progress achieved towards the targets defined in the DSOCR. While the tiger population trends reported may seem positive, they appear to be cumulative rather than yearly trends, in which case they actually indicate a decline of 9% in 2013, and stabilization since 2014. The elephant population appears to be stable in recent years, but suffered an 8% decline in 2013. Data for rhino and orangutan are not provided, and occupancy data for all four species remains lacking. It is therefore recommended that the Committee request the State Party to provide detailed population data for Sumatran tiger, elephant, and rhino, as well as occupancy data for all three species and Sumatran orangutan, including clarification of methodologies used for their statistical analyses, in order to enable a correct and unambiguous interpretation of the results and an assessment of progress achieved towards the targets defined in the DSOCR.

The efforts undertaken to improve law enforcement are noted. However, the reported numbers of cases of forest crimes, illegal agricultural activities, and wildlife trafficking do not enable an assessment of the severity of these issues. Considering that the 2013 reactive monitoring mission reported that all patrols in the property are managed using the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) which enables data collection on illegal activities, and also considering that illegal logging, agricultural encroachment and poaching/wildlife trade could have significant impacts on the OUV of the property, it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party to provide comprehensive data about these illegal activities, including maps of where incidences were recorded, in order to enable a well-informed assessment of the significance of these threats.

Finally, it is recommended that the Committee retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2016
40 COM 7A.48
Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Indonesia) (N 1167)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 39 COM 7A.15, adopted at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015),
  3. Commends the State Party for its commitment to secure the Leuser Ecosystem by putting in place a moratorium on palm oil and mining, as well as a temporary suspension of all land clearing operations by palm oil and mining companies in the Leuser Ecosystem while a review of their licenses is being conducted, which will consider key wildlife habitats among other aspects;
  4. Considers that the designation of buffer zones should include key areas for wildlife in the Leuser Ecosystem as well as ecological corridors connecting these areas with the property to ensure these are legally protected, and encourages the State Party to seek the advice of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN to identify the areas in the Leuser Ecosystem that are crucially important to ensure the integrity of the property;
  5. Welcomes the State Party’s commitment to avoid any new road developments in the property and the confirmation that no mining licenses overlap with the property, and that illegal traditional mining sites in Kerinci Seblat National Park have been closed and are in the process of being rehabilitated;
  6. Urges the State Party to ensure that the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the geothermal development license adjacent to Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park includes a specific assessment of impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, in accordance with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, and to submit a copy of the EIA to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, prior to making a decision to approve the development;
  7. Requests the State Party to provide detailed population data of Sumatran tiger, elephant and rhino, as well as occupancy data for all three species and Sumatran orangutan, including clarification of methodologies used for their statistical analyses, in order to enable an assessment of progress achieved towards the targets defined in the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR);
  8. Also requests the State Party to provide details on the data collected through the application of the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) in order to enable an assessment of the significance of forest crimes, illegal agricultural activities, and poaching/wildlife trade, and their impacts on the OUV of the property;
  9. Noting that the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of the road network in the Bukit Barisan Mountain Range is expected to be available for public consultation by end 2016, reiterates its request to the State Party to submit the SEA, by 1 February 2017, to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017;
  11. Decides to retain the Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Indonesia) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
40 COM 8C.2
Update of the list of World Heritage in Danger (retained sites)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined the state of conservation reports of properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC/16/40.COM/7A, WHC/16/40.COM/7A.Add and WHC/16/40.COM/7A.Add.2),
  2. Decides to retain the following properties on the List of World Heritage in Danger:
  • Afghanistan, Cultural Landscape and Archaeological Remains of the Bamiyan Valley (Decision 40 COM 7A.26)
  • Afghanistan, Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Decision 40 COM 7A.27)
  • Belize, Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System (Decision 40 COM 7A.32)
  • Bolivia (Plurinational State of), City of Potosí (Decision 40 COM 7A.1)
  • Central African Republic, Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.34)
  • Chile, Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Decision 40 COM 7A.2)
  • Côte d'Ivoire, Comoé National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.35)
  • Côte d'Ivoire / Guinea, Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve (Decision 40 COM 7A.36)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Garamba National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.37)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.38)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Okapi Wildlife Reserve (Decision 40 COM 7A.39)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Salonga National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.40)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Virunga National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.41)
  • Egypt, Abu Mena (Decision 40 COM 7A.9)
  • Ethiopia, Simien National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.43)
  • Georgia, Bagrati Cathedral and Gelati Monastery (Decision 40 COM 7A.28)
  • Honduras, Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve (Decision 40 COM 7A.33)
  • Indonesia, Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Decision 40 COM 7A.48)
  • Iraq, Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Decision 40 COM 7A.10)
  • Iraq, Hatra (Decision 40 COM 7A.11)
  • Iraq, Samarra Archaeological City (Decision 40 COM 7A.12)
  • Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (site proposed by Jordan) (Decision 40 COM 7A.13)
  • Madagascar, Rainforests of the Atsinanana (Decision 40 COM 7A.44)
  • Mali, Timbuktu (Decision 40 COM 7A.6)
  • Mali, Tomb of Askia (Decision 40 COM 7A.7)
  • Niger, Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Decision 40 COM 7A.45)
  • Palestine, Birthplace of Jesus: Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Decision 40 COM 7A.14)
  • Palestine, Palestine: Land of Olives and Vines – Cultural Landscape of Southern Jerusalem, Battir (Decision 40 COM 7A.15)
  • Panama, Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo (Decision 40 COM 7A.3)
  • Peru, Chan Chan Archaelogical Zone (Decision 40 COM 7A.4)
  • Senegal, Niokolo-Koba National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.46)
  • Serbia, Medieval Monuments in Kosovo (Decision 40 COM 7A. 30)
  • Solomon Islands, East Rennell (Decision 40 COM 7A.49)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Aleppo (Decision 40 COM 7A.16)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Bosra (Decision 40 COM 7A.17)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Damascus (Decision 40 COM 7A.18)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient Villages of Northern Syria (Decision 40 COM 7A.19)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Crac des Chevaliers and Qal’at Salah El-Din (Decision 40 COM 7A.20)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Site of Palmyra (Decision 40 COM 7A.21)
  • Uganda, Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Decision 40 COM 7A.8)
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (Decision 40 COM 7A.31)
  • United Republic of Tanzania, Selous Game Reserve (Decision 40 COM 7A.47)
  • United States of America, Everglades National Park (Decision 40 COM 7A.50)
  • Venezuela, Coro and its Port (Decision 40 COM 7A.5)
  • Yemen, Historic Town of Zabid (Decision 40 COM 7A.23)
  • Yemen, Old City of Sana’a (Decision 40 COM 7A.24)
  • Yemen, Old Walled City of Shibam (Decision 40 COM 7A.25).
Draft Decision: 40 COM 7A.48

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/16/40.COM/7A.Add,
  2. Recalling Decision 39 COM 7A.15, adopted at its 39th session (Bonn, 2015),
  3. Commends the State Party for its commitment to secure the Leuser Ecosystem by putting in place a moratorium on palm oil and mining, as well as a temporary suspension of all land clearing operations by palm oil and mining companies in the Leuser Ecosystem while a review of their licenses is being conducted, which will consider key wildlife habitats among other aspects;
  4. Considers that the designation of buffer zones should include key areas for wildlife in the Leuser Ecosystem as well as ecological corridors connecting these areas with the property to ensure these are legally protected, and encourages the State Party to seek the advice of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN to identify the areas in the Leuser Ecosystem that are crucially important to ensure the integrity of the property;
  5. Welcomes the State Party’s commitment to avoid any new road developments in the property and the confirmation that no mining licenses overlap with the property, and that illegal traditional mining sites in Kerinci Seblat National Park have been closed and are in the process of being rehabilitated;
  6. Urges the State Party to ensure that the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the geothermal development license adjacent to Bukit Barisan Selatan National Park includes a specific assessment of impacts on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property, in accordance with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, and to submit a copy of the EIA to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN, prior to making a decision to approve the development;
  7. Requests the State Party to provide detailed population data of Sumatran tiger, elephant and rhino, as well as occupancy data for all three species and Sumatran orangutan, including clarification of methodologies used for their statistical analyses, in order to enable an assessment of progress achieved towards the targets defined in the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR);
  8. Also requests the State Party to provide details on the data collected through the application of the Spatial Monitoring and Reporting Tool (SMART) in order to enable an assessment of the significance of forest crimes, illegal agricultural activities, and poaching/wildlife trade, and their impacts on the OUV of the property;
  9. Noting that the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of the road network in the Bukit Barisan Mountain Range is expected to be available for public consultation by end 2016, reiterates its request to the State Party to submit the SEA, by 1 February 2017, to the World Heritage Centre, for review by IUCN;
  10. Further requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2017, an updated report on the state of conservation of the property and the implementation of the above, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 41st session in 2017;
  11. Decides to retain the Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Indonesia) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Report year: 2016
Indonesia
Date of Inscription: 2004
Category: Natural
Criteria: (vii)(ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 2011-present
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2016) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 40COM (2016)
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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