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Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves

Niger
Factors affecting the property in 2018*
  • Civil unrest
  • Erosion and siltation/ deposition
  • Forestry /wood production
  • Human resources
  • Identity, social cohesion, changes in local population and community
  • Illegal activities
  • Livestock farming / grazing of domesticated animals
  • Management activities
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports
  • Political instability and civil strife
  • Poverty
  • Management constraints (lack of human and logistical means)
  • Ostrich poaching
  • Soil erosion
  • Demographic pressure
  • Livestock pressure
  • Pressure on forestry resources
  • Godl panning
  • Illegal activities (increase in poaching threats and timber harvesting)
Threats for which the property was inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger

The region having recently suffered from military conflict and civil disturbance, the Government of Niger requested the Director-General of UNESCO to launch an appeal for the protection of the site

Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger

In progress

Corrective Measures for the property

Adopted, see page https://whc.unesco.org/en/decisions/325  

Timeframe for the implementation of the corrective measures

In progress

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2018
Requests approved: 7 (from 1999-2013)
Total amount approved : 172,322 USD
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2018

On 2 February 2018, the State Party submitted a report on the state of conservation of the property, available at http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/573/documents, providing the following information:

  • Eight park rangers were recruited in 2017, bringing the total number of park rangers to 23. These are assisted by 20 voluntary guards recruited from local communities. The provision of an all-terrain vehicle, three motorcycles, and anti-poaching and ecological monitoring equipment has enhanced surveillance of the property;
  • In 2017, seven cases of illegal wood cutting and transport have been recorded in the property, with no cases of poaching. A perceived reduction in these illegal activities is attributed to the permanent presence of park managers, an adaptive approach to surveillance, and the existence of informant networks;
  • An International Assistance Request (IAR) was submitted for the development in 2018 of a Management Plan and Surveillance Plan;
  • The threat of invasive alien species (IAS), particularly Prosopis juliflora, will be addressed in the Management Plan. In the meantime, degraded areas are being restored in line with the annual work plan for the property, with 370 ha, including 30 ha affected by Prosopis juliflora, having been restored in 2017;
  • Dama Gazelle is being monitored through a system of camera traps, which will also be put in place for Cheetah. Barbary Sheep are being monitored through direct or indirect observations during wildlife counts;
  • North African Red-necked Ostrich is no longer present in the property. Support for the captive breeding programme in Iférouane remains inadequate, and it is fully dependent on external funding for the provision of fodder. A business plan will be developed as part of the Management Plan to secure the funding required to ensure the effectiveness of the breeding programme;
  • No gold mining occurs within the property, but permits for the exploration and exploitation of uranium, oil and gold have been attributed in its close vicinity, and illegal gold panning continues in its vicinity. Impacts on habitats and species are noted, including as a result of deforestation and poaching. Surveillance has been accordingly intensified to monitor impacts and the implementation of mitigation measures, leading to a reported decrease in the 2017 threat level, compared to 2016.

The report further notes impacts from climate change and the need for climate change adaptation programmes, and reiterates the need to secure wildlife corridors in order to facilitate the migration of wildlife from the property to other protected areas as part of the second phase of the Niger Fauna Corridor Project (Projet Niger Fauna Corridors – PNFC).

Analysis and Conclusion by World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in 2018

The State Party is continuing its efforts to implement the corrective measures, in particular to continue to improve surveillance and monitoring at the property, including through the recruitment of additional park rangers and engagement of local communities. The development of a Surveillance Plan and a Management Plan remain urgent needs, and the submission of the IAR in that regard is noted. The International Assistance Panel in January 2018 reviewed this request and sent it back to the State Party for revision, however, a revised version was not received in time for consideration at the April 2018 Panel. It is therefore recommended that the Committee encourage the State Party to submit a revised IAR in line with the comments made by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN.

The information provided by the State Party on illegal logging and poaching should be further clarified, as it is on the one hand reporting a reduction of reported cases, while on the other hand noting impacts on habitats and wildlife from deforestation and poaching, among other impacts related to the presence of uranium, oil and gold exploration and exploitation permits in the vicinity of the property. The presence of these permits is of significant concern, and it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party to provide maps clearly showing the location of these permits in relation to the property. The State Party should further ensure that all exploration and exploitation activities are subject to a prior Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, to ensure that these activities do not have a negative impact on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property. These EIA should be submitted to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, prior to authorizing these activities, in line with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines.

The lack of adequate support to the captive breeding programme of Red-necked Ostrich at Iférouane is of concern. Noting the critical importance of captive breeding programmes for the recovery of this species in Niger, it is recommended that the Committee request the State party to seek expert advice on how to improve the programme and reiterate its request to the State Party to secure the necessary funding for its effective operation, and to closely collaborate with other States Parties to develop and implement a regional action plan for the conservation of this species. It is also recommended that the Committee again strongly encourage the State Party to seek the expert advise of the IUCN Species Survival Commission Conservation Planning Specialist Group to evaluate and improve the efficiency of the programme and to develop a strategy for a potential reintroduction of the species.

It is noted that monitoring of other species is occurring in the property. However, the State Party did not provide any data resulting from these monitoring programmes. Noting that the 2015 mission to the property concluded that Cheetah was considered locally extinct unless proven otherwise, it is recommended that the Committee request the State Party to clarify whether any new information about the presence of Cheetah has emerged since the mission. Similarly, while the State Party’s efforts to restore degraded areas, including those affected by the invasive Prosopis juliflora, are appreciated, no data are provided regarding the extent of the invasion and its impacts on OUV. Such data, both as regards the populations and trends of key species and the spread of IAS, are needed to inform management decisions, as well as for the development of a proposal for the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR). It is therefore recommended that the Committee encourage the State Party to seek advice from the World Heritage Centre and IUCN with a view to preparing a DSOCR, and that it retain the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2018
42 COM 7A.54
Aïr and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Niger) (N 573)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/18/42.COM/7A,
  2. Recalling Decision 41 COM 7A.15, adopted at its 41st session (Krakow, 2017),
  3. Welcomes the State Party’s continued efforts to implement the corrective measures, in particular the recruitment of additional staff for the property and the continued engagement of local communities to enhance surveillance of the property, and requests the State Party to continue and further strengthen these efforts;
  4. Noting that the development of a Surveillance Plan and a Management Plan remain urgent needs, also welcomes the State Party’s initiative to submit an International Assistance Request (IAR) with the aim of addressing these needs, and encourages the State Party to submit a revised IAR in line with the comments provided by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN;
  5. Notes with significant concern that support for the captive breeding programme of Red-necked Ostrich in the property remains inadequate, and reiterates its request to the State Party to secure the necessary funding for the effective operation of the captive breeding programme through close collaboration with other States Parties to develop and implement a regional action plan for the conservation of this species, and strongly encourages the State Party to seek expert advice of the IUCN Species Survival Commission Conservation Planning Specialist Group to evaluate and improve the efficiency of the programme and to develop a strategy for a potential reintroduction of the species;
  6. Also notes with significant concern the reported presence of uranium, oil, and gold exploration and exploitation permits in the close vicinity of the property, as well as the continuation of illegal gold panning, and also requests the State Party to provide maps clearly showing the location of these permits in relation to the property, and to ensure that all exploration and exploitation activities are subject to a prior rigorous Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, to ensure that these activities do not have a negative impact on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property and submit these EIA to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, prior to authorizing these activities, in line with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Also reiterates its request to the State Party to provide detailed information and data on poaching and timber harvesting within the property and its vicinity, as well as the actions taken to combat these threats;
  8. Also noting the State Party’s ongoing efforts to monitor key species in the property, and to restore degraded areas, including those affected by the invasive alien species (IAS) Prosopis juliflora, further requests the State Party to clarify whether any new information regarding the presence of Cheetah has emerged since the 2015 mission to the property, which considered this species to be locally extinct, and further reiterates its request to the State Party to:
    1. Submit to the World Heritage Centre the monitoring results for each species in order to demonstrate their conservation status and trends,
    2. Design and implement, in consultation with IUCN’s Species Survival Commission Invasive Species Specialist Group, an eradication plan or IAS Management Plan for Prosopis juliflora, as appropriate;
  9. Also encourages the State Party to seek advice from the World Heritage Centre and IUCN with a view to preparing the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR);
  10. Requests furthermore the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2019, 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 43rd session in 2019;
  11. Decides to retain Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Niger) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
42 COM 8C.2
Update of the List of World Heritage in Danger (Retained Properties)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined the state of conservation reports of properties inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger (WHC/18/42.COM/7A, WHC/18/42.COM/7A.Add and WHC/18/42.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 42 COM 7A.1)
  • Afghanistan, Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam (Decision 42 COM 7A.2)
  • Austria, Historic Centre of Vienna (Decision 42 COM 7A.5)
  • Bolivia (Plurinational State of), City of Potosí (Decision 42 COM 7A.8)
  • Central African Republic, Manovo-Gounda St Floris National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.45)
  • Chile, Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Decision 42 COM 7A.9)
  • Côte d'Ivoire / Guinea, Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve (Decision 42 COM 7A.46)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Garamba National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.47)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Kahuzi-Biega National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.48)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Okapi Wildlife Reserve (Decision 42 COM 7A.49)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Salonga National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.50)
  • Democratic Republic of the Congo, Virunga National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.51)
  • Egypt, Abu Mena (Decision 42 COM 7A.17)
  • Honduras, Río Plátano Biosphere Reserve (Decision 42 COM 7A.44)
  • Indonesia, Tropical Rainforest Heritage of Sumatra (Decision 42 COM 7A.40)
  • Iraq, Ashur (Qal'at Sherqat) (Decision 42 COM 7A.18)
  • Iraq, Hatra (Decision 42 COM 7A.19)
  • Iraq, Samarra Archaeological City (Decision 42 COM 7A.20)
  • Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls (site proposed by Jordan) (Decision 42 COM 7A.21)
  • Libya, Archaeological Site of Cyrene (Decision 42 COM 7A.22)
  • Libya, Archaeological Site of Leptis Magna (Decision 42 COM 7A.23)
  • Libya, Archaeological Site of Sabratha (Decision 42 COM 7A.24)
  • Libya, Old Town of Ghadamès (Decision 42 COM 7A.25)
  • Libya, Rock-Art Sites of Tadrart Acacus (Decision 42 COM 7A.26)
  • Madagascar, Rainforests of the Atsinanana (Decision 42 COM 7A.53)
  • Mali, Old Towns of Djenné (Decision 42 COM 7A.13)
  • Mali, Timbuktu (Decision 42 COM 7A.14)
  • Mali, Tomb of Askia (Decision 42 COM 7A.15)
  • Micronesia (Federated States of), Nan Madol: Ceremonial Centre of Eastern Micronesia (Decision 42 COM 7A.3)
  • Niger, Aïr and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Decision 42 COM 7A.54)
  • Palestine, Birthplace of Jesus: Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Decision 42 COM 7A.27)
  • Palestine, Palestine: Land of Olives and Vines – Cultural Landscape of Southern Jerusalem, Battir (Decision 42 COM 7A.29)
  • Palestine, Hebron/Al-Khalil Old Town (Decision 42 COM 7A.28)
  • Panama, Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo (Decision 42 COM 7A.10)
  • Peru, Chan Chan Archaelogical Zone (Decision 42 COM 7A.11)
  • Senegal, Niokolo-Koba National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.55)
  • Serbia, Medieval Monuments in Kosovo (Decision 42 COM 7A.6)
  • Solomon Islands, East Rennell (Decision 42 COM 7A.41)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Aleppo (Decision 42 COM 7A.30)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Bosra (Decision 42 COM 7A.31)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient City of Damascus (Decision 42 COM 7A.32)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Ancient Villages of Northern Syria (Decision 42 COM 7A.33)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Crac des Chevaliers and Qal’at Salah El-Din (Decision 42 COM 7A.34)
  • Syrian Arab Republic, Site of Palmyra (Decision 42 COM 7A.35)
  • Uganda, Tombs of Buganda Kings at Kasubi (Decision 42 COM 7A.16)
  • United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland, Liverpool – Maritime Mercantile City (Decision 42 COM 7A.7)
  • United Republic of Tanzania, Selous Game Reserve (Decision 42 COM 7A.56)
  • United States of America, Everglades National Park (Decision 42 COM 7A.42)
  • Uzbekistan, Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz (Decision 42 COM 7A.4)
  • Venezuela (Bolivarian Republic of), Coro and its Port (Decision 42 COM 7A.12)
  • Yemen, Historic Town of Zabid (Decision 42 COM 7A.37)
  • Yemen, Old City of Sana’a (Decision 42 COM 7A.38)
  • Yemen, Old Walled City of Shibam (Decision 42 COM 7A.39)
Draft Decision: 42 COM 7A.54

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC/18/42.COM/7A,
  2. Recalling Decision 41 COM 7A.15, adopted at its 41st session (Krakow, 2017),
  3. Welcomes the State Party’s continued efforts to implement the corrective measures, in particular the recruitment of additional staff for the property and the continued engagement of local communities to enhance surveillance of the property, and requests the State Party to continue and further strengthen these efforts;
  4. Noting that the development of a Surveillance Plan and a Management Plan remain urgent needs, also welcomes the State Party’s initiative to submit an International Assistance Request (IAR) with the aim of addressing these needs, and encourages the State Party to submit a revised IAR in line with the comments provided by the World Heritage Centre and IUCN;
  5. Notes with significant concern that support for the captive breeding programme of Red-necked Ostrich in the property remains inadequate, and reiterates its request to the State Party to secure the necessary funding for the effective operation of the captive breeding programme through close collaboration with other States Parties to develop and implement a regional action plan for the conservation of this species, and strongly encourages the State Party to seek expert advice of the IUCN Species Survival Commission Conservation Planning Specialist Group to evaluate and improve the efficiency of the programme and to develop a strategy for a potential reintroduction of the species;
  6. Also notes with significant concern the reported presence of uranium, oil, and gold exploration and exploitation permits in the close vicinity of the property, as well as the continuation of illegal gold panning, and also requests the State Party to provide maps clearly showing the location of these permits in relation to the property, and to ensure that all exploration and exploitation activities are subject to a prior rigorous Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA), in line with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, to ensure that these activities do not have a negative impact on the Outstanding Universal Value (OUV) of the property and submit these EIA to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, prior to authorizing these activities, in line with Paragraph 172 of the Operational Guidelines;
  7. Also reiterates its request to the State Party to provide detailed information and data on poaching and timber harvesting within the property and its vicinity, as well as the actions taken to combat these threats;
  8. Also noting the State Party’s ongoing efforts to monitor key species in the property, and to restore degraded areas, including those affected by the invasive alien species (IAS) Prosopis juliflora, further requests the State Party to clarify whether any new information regarding the presence of Cheetah has emerged since the 2015 mission to the property, which considered this species to be locally extinct, and further reiterates its request to the State Party to:
    1. Submit to the World Heritage Centre the monitoring results for each species in order to demonstrate their conservation status and trends,
    2. Design and implement, in consultation with IUCN’s Species Survival Commission Invasive Species Specialist Group, an eradication plan or IAS Management Plan for Prosopis juliflora, as appropriate;
  9. Also encourages the State Party to seek advice from the World Heritage Centre and IUCN with a view to preparing the Desired state of conservation for the removal of the property from the List of World Heritage in Danger (DSOCR);
  10. Requests furthermore the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2019, 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 43rd session in 2019;
  11. Decides to retain Air and Ténéré Natural Reserves (Niger) on the List of World Heritage in Danger.
Report year: 2018
Niger
Date of Inscription: 1991
Category: Natural
Criteria: (vii)(ix)(x)
Danger List (dates): 1992-present
Documents examined by the Committee
SOC Report by the State Party
Report (2018) .pdf
arrow_circle_right 42COM (2018)
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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