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Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu

Peru
Factors affecting the property in 2010*
  • Avalanche/ landslide
  • Effects arising from use of transportation infrastructure
  • Governance
  • Ground transport infrastructure
  • Impacts of tourism / visitor / recreation
  • Management systems/ management plan
Factors* affecting the property identified in previous reports

a) Delays in reviewing the Master Plan and developing detailed yearly operational plans, and inadequate budgetary support for effective implementation;

b) No evaluation of transport options, related geological studies, or the impact of bus traffic on increasing the risk of landslides;

c) Lack of impact studies related to the carrying capacity of the Citadel and Inca Trail;

d) Delays in the development and implementation of a public use plan;

e) Delays in implementing urban planning and control measures for the Machu Picchu village, immediately adjacent to the property and its main point of entry, which has impacted on the visual values of the property;

f) Lack of effective management of the property;

g) Lack of risk management plans related to natural disasters;

h) Inadequate governance arrangements including lack of adequate coordination of activities between different institutions and stakeholders involved in site management;

i) Uncontrolled visitor access to the western part of the Sanctuary, related to the construction of the Carrilluchayoc Bridge.

UNESCO Extra-Budgetary Funds until 2010

Total amount provided to the property: USD 15,000 for the social participation workshop requested by the World Heritage Committee (Decision 30 COM 7B.35). 

International Assistance: requests for the property until 2010
Requests approved: 11 (from 1986-2001)
Total amount approved : 166,625 USD
Missions to the property until 2010**

October 1997: IUCN/ICOMOS mission; October 1999: World Heritage Centre/IUCN/ICOMOS mission; February-March 2002: World Heritage Centre/IUCN/ICOMOS mission; October 2003: World Heritage Centre visit; April 2005: World Heritage Centre mission; April, 2007: World Heritage Centre/IUCN/ICOMOS reactive monitoring mission; January 2009: World Heritage Centre/IUCN/ICOMOS reinforced monitoring mission; February 2010: World Heritage Centre urgent technical mission

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2010

A joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN/ICOMOS reinforced monitoring mission to the property was carried out from 19 to 23 January 2009 (The report of the mission is available online at the following web address: https://whc.unesco.org/en/sessions/34COM). The objectives of the mission were to assess the current state of conservation of the property and to develop jointly with the State Party an Action Plan to effectively and adequately address immediate issues that could potentially threaten the Outstanding Universal Value of the property, focusing mainly on governance, risk preparedness, development at Machu Picchu Village and public use at the western access. The Action Plan, with timelines and costs for its undertaking, was agreed on and recommended for implementation in Decision 33 COM 7B.42.

The State Party submitted a state of conservation report on 2 February 2010 that provides detailed information on the actions implemented in response to the World Heritage Committee’s decision at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009).

a) Implementation of participatory and conflict resolution workshops to improve governance at the site

The State Party reports that during 2009, Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary Head Office, from the National Service of State-Protected Natural Areas (Servicio Nacional de Áreas Naturales Protegidas por el Estado-SERNANP) and INC/Cusco (Instituto Nacional de la Cultura) Machu Picchu Archaeological National Park Head Office implemented several participatory workshops with the population of rural areas to examine conflicts regarding housing, applicable regulations, dissemination of the Master Plan, etc. It provides a list of workshops implemented, topics addressed and number of participants.

 

The World Heritage and the Advisory Bodies take note of the State Party’s continuing activities focused on awareness rising and recognize their importance as a means to engage in participatory decision-making for the property. The results still need to be integrated into a revised management plan, as has been requested by the World Heritage Committee.

 

b) Statement of Outstanding Universal Value and desired state of conservation, through a participatory workshop

The draft for the retrospective Statement of Outstanding Universal Value was sent to the World Heritage Centre on 8 March 2010 in Spanish for formal review.

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies welcome the development of the draft statement of Outstanding Universal Value and will review it in collaboration with the State Party upon the official definitive submission. They note that a desired state of conservation was also requested in light of the conditions that have been highlighted in previous decisions by the World Heritage Committee.

 

c) Emergency Action Plan for risk reduction and disaster recovery

The State Party completed the Emergency Action Plan for Risk Reduction and Disaster Recovery for Machu Picchu village in 2009. The plan is included in the state of conservation report and includes vulnerability and risk analysis related to floods and landslides.

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies welcome the Action Plan provided, but note that many of the proposed actions are still in the planning phase and need to be further developed. Clear and precise courses of action can be established to inform visitors and residents of the potential risk and, as far as possible, to set up actions to mitigate risks and to ascertain adequate responses to possible disasters.

 

In January 2010, torrential rains caused major flooding and landslides in a large area including the location of the property, thus affecting the property, resulting in two fatalities, seriously affecting local populations, tourists, damaging infrastructure, roads and rail links, and impacting Machu Picchu town, Puente Ruinas, Piscakuchu, numerous archaeological complexes, access points to the Citadel, and water reservoirs. Graphic images are available at: https://whc.unesco.org/en/list/274/documents/ (February 2010 technical mission report):

From 7 to 9 February 2010, a mission was carried out by the World Heritage Centre to review information provided on the geodynamic and hydro meteorological phenomena that caused the disaster, and the ways in which the national authorities had warned of the imminent dangers, as well as clarifying the measures the State Party was going to undertake to: (a) assess the damage; and (b) mitigate the adverse effects on natural and cultural heritage by identifying immediate actions to restore normal conditions. The mission considered that a range of natural factors, land management issues, and weaknesses in planning and response contributed to the severity of the event.

 

The mission met with a representative of the National Institute of Civil Defence (Instituto Nacional de Defensa Civil – INDECI) who explained that, since the introduction of the Organic Law of Municipalities of 2008, Civil Defence matters have been decentralized to the regional governments. The representative noted that following a technical visit to the Sanctuary by INDECI in August 2009, a report was submitted to the Mayor of Machu Picchu town, informing him of the risks and recommending that no further constructions be carried out and that possible evacuation procedures be identified in the case of landslides. It also noted the process of establishing the warning system and the difficulties in implementing an evacuation and contingency plan in the area. The mission was concerned that there has been a lack of response to these recommendations.

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies express their grave concern at the state of conservation and effective management of the property. Management of areas within and surrounding the property was inadequate to reduce risks and prepare for and respond to disasters. A range of actions identified in the Emergency Plan of May 2009 which could have helped to avoid these impacts have not yet been implemented.

During the World Heritage Centre mission in February 2010, discussions took place between the Ministry of Environment, the Director of INC, the Director of SERNANP, and other Peruvian authorities, on how to coordinate the governance of the Sanctuary to include changes in the designation of the roles of various institutions and the subsequent decision-making processes within the Machu Picchu Management Unit (Unidad de gestión de Machu Picchu-UGM). Various strategies were proposed, namely to establish an institution of the highest management hierarchy composed of Ministers and chaired by the Ministry of Environment, and a technical body coordinated by INC and SERNANP. Both institutions would work urgently on a preliminary text of the Emergency Decree, encompassing the operational activities for a one year, with the intention of clearly establishing a national authority for the Sanctuary and a law that decrees the Sanctuary as a Special Protection Area. This highlighted the need for urgent action to provide safety and protection of residents and tourists as well as the preservation of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu and its buffer zone, and the urgent need to regulate land use and activities taking place in the District of Machu Picchu (Aguas Calientes) and surrounding areas of the Sanctuary. Unfortunately, the Emergency Decree was not approved.

In March 2010 the State Party submitted additional information on the areas of the Sanctuary that were significantly impacted by flood waters, and the efforts undertaken in the restoration of access to the property and to the region.

On 16 March 2010 the Ministry of the Environment presented to the Secretary of the Council of Ministers a draft of a Presidential Decree in defence of natural heritage protected areas at the Sanctuary, which was approved by the Congress of the Republic on 30 March 2010. The text of the Decree underlines the mandate of the national policy structured around four key themes of environmental management. One of the main themes is the conservation and sustainable use of natural resources and biological diversity through appropriate land-use planning guidelines to strengthen mechanisms to prevent settlement of population and socio-economic development activities in areas with high potential risk to natural hazards. The Decree does not propose changes to the composition of the UGM or in terms of governance nor refers specifically to the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu.

On 1 April 2010, the Sanctuary was reopened, with access to Machu Picchu provided by road from Ollantaytambo, 82 km from Machu Picchu and from there on the restored railway to Machu Picchu town.

 

d) Implementation of a management effectiveness assessment and agreement of a three-year plan to address the improvement of its effectiveness

The State Party reports that the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism currently chairs the Management Unit; changes in the Vice Ministry have delayed the implementation of tasks so the new authority will assume the implementation of the three-year plan for the management effectiveness.

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies take note of the operational changes at the institutional level. They wish to underscore the importance of implementing the management effectiveness assessment to identify with precision the current status of management and the identification of gaps as a basis for improving management processes for the property. They reiterate the need to build capacity among managers and other stakeholders in this process.

 

e) Establishment and implementation of regulatory measures for the western access to the Sanctuary and definition of public use regulations

The State Party reports that statistics on visitor access through the western sector have been compiled and that the INC and SERNANP have erected a control station at the Puente Hidroeléctrica. They also report that a meeting with the Public Tender Committee of the Regional Government of Cusco was held on 23 December 2009 for consultancy on the elaboration of the Public Use Plan for the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu. The tender documents were approved in this meeting. In accordance with the Contracting Annual Plan for fiscal 2009, from the Cusco Regional Government Head Office, Executing Unit 001 Cusco, approved through Regional Executive Resolution № 057-2009-GR CUSCO/PR, a Consultancy Process “Public Use Plan for Machu Picchu Historic Sanctuary” must be implemented through a Public Tender Selection Process.

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies reiterate their concern about the lack of significant progress in formulating a plan to manage the development of the western access as agreed in the Action Plan, which constitutes a threat to the attributes that sustain the Outstanding Universal Value of the property and to visitors.

 

f) Harmonization of existing legal frameworks and regulatory measures and definition of strategies for efficient implementation

The supervising institutions of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu jointly prepared the report. It states that the responsibility for the preservation, protection and defence of both cultural and natural heritage of the Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu or the National Archaeological Park of Machu Picchu, rests with the National Institute of Culture (INC) and the National Service of State-Protected Natural Areas (SERNANP).

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies note the there are extensive measures in place but remain concerned about the efficacy and adequacy of their implementation. They also highlight that issues such as duplicity of functions, and overlapping mandates, amongst others, continue to hinder the effective protection of the property and its governance mechanisms.

 

g) Analysis of land tenure status and mapping of current uses to identify adequate measures to maintain the Outstanding Universal Value and integrity of the property

The State Party reports that work began in 2009 to identify lands used by rural inhabitants for agriculture and housing. In addition, activities were implemented with the Municipality of Machu Picchu and the Commission for the Regularization of Informal ownership (Comisión de Formalización de la Propiedad Informal-COFOPRI) to grant land titles to inhabitants who are within the demarcation of the 2000 Urban Organization Plan. Due to increasing illegal occupation of land at the Intiwatana and Huayllabamba Districts, additional activities were implemented to prepare quantitative information on the properties, occupants, title holders and other occupants of the sector.

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies recognize the progress made on this issue and urge the State Party to continue its efforts so that land tenure and use can be comprehensively analyzed and a strategic response developed to sustain the Outstanding Universal value and integrity of the property, including the identification of potential safe access points and routes for visitation.

 

h) Other issues

The State Party submitted a detailed activity schedule for the fiscal year 2010 that includes actions to be implemented both by the INC and the SERNANP. The proposal includes actions responsive to provisions made in the management plan for the conservation, maintenance and management of the property as well as the ones highlighted during the reinforced monitoring mission of January 2009.

 

In conclusion, the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies remain strongly concerned that a spectrum of pressing concerns continues unresolved including access and transport, risk management, public use, uncontrolled urban development and crowding at Machu Picchu village, inappropriate land uses, sporadic stakeholder participation and governance issues. These issues have been previously highlighted in numerous reactive monitoring missions and in decisions by the World Heritage Committee. Many of the actions reported by the State Party have yet to be taken from planning stages to implementation and after 10 years of recommendations and proposals for actions there are not yet effective nor adequate measures in place to systematically and holistically address threats to the Outstanding Universal Value of the property.

 

The emergency situation of January and February 2010 further evidenced the inadequacy of the management arrangements and the lack of disaster preparedness or disaster response procedures. It has also exacerbated existing problems and highlighted the overall vulnerability of the property at both national and international level, especially with regard to access.

 

The World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies consider that the threats to the property are impacting adversely on its Outstanding Universal Value and are pushing the property towards imminent danger. They also note that the reinforced monitoring mechanism was previously applied to the property and led to the preparation of a programme of actions to address the most pressing threats and management weaknesses of the property and its estimated costs. They consider that the State Party should be assisted in securing a greater level of support at the international and national level to increase the rate of implementation in all recommendations, as set out in a the Action Plan. The establishment of an international support panel, as has been successfully implemented in other properties such as Angkor (Cambodia), is recommended to focus the international support that is required. The combination of the Presidential Decree at the national level, and more focused technical cooperation and support at the international level, should be centred on ensuring the political will and resources to address governance and sustainable finance issues, effective stakeholder involvement, implementation of the 2009 Action Plan, and steady resolution of the backlog of unaddressed management issues before the 35th session of the World Heritage Committee in 2011. In the absence of this essential progress, they suggest that it might be appropriate for the World Heritage Committee to consider inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Decisions adopted by the Committee in 2010
34 COM 7B.42
Historic Sanctuary of Machu Picchu (Peru) (C/N 274)

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling Decision 33 COM 7B.42, adopted at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009),

3. Expresses great concern at the considerable damage caused to the property by the recent floods and landslides affecting both, the fabric of the property and access to it, and considers that the lack of adequate regulatory measures and disaster response plans appears to have exacerbated their impact;

4. Urges the State Party to improve the implementation of the actions requested at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009), and recommended by the reinforced monitoring mission, in particular:

a) Definition and implementation of provisions to be included in a revised management plan, derived from participatory processes, to address threats derived from unregulated access to the site, absence of a public use plan and inadequate urban planning,

b) Further development of the submitted risk reduction and disaster recovery plan to include clear and precise course of action to inform visitors and residents of the actual and potential risks and to provide mitigation strategies as a matter of urgency,

c) Undertake a management effectiveness assessment and integration of the results into a revision of the management plan and related capacity building programmes,

d) Establishment and implementation of regulatory measures for the western access to the sanctuary and finalize the commissioned public use plan,

e) Implementation of strategies to strengthen decision-making processes and governance at the property;

5. Notes that unresolved issues as well as the new natural risk conditions constitute a danger to the attributes that sustain the Outstanding Universal Value and integrity of the property, and also notes that the State Party requests the application of the Reinforced Monitoring Mechanism;

6. Recommends that, given the major natural and structural threats facing the property, the State Party establish an international support panel to provide technical advice and support to the State Party, in order to advocate for the political will and resources needed to address governance and sustainable finance issues, to guide effective stakeholder involvement, to seek support for the implementation of the 2009 Action Plan, and to address the backlog of unaddressed management issues;

7. Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2011, a report on the state of conservation of the property and on the steps taken to implement the above mentioned recommendations, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 35th session in 2011, with a view to considering, in the absence of substantial progress, the possible inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Draft Decision: 34 COM 7B.42

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/7B.Add,

2. Recalling Decision 33 COM 7B.42, adopted at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009),

3. Expresses great concern at the considerable damage caused to the property by the recent floods and landslides affecting both, the fabric of the property and access to it, and considers that the lack of adequate regulatory measures and disaster response plans appears to have exacerbated their impact;

4. Urges the State Party to improve the implementation of the actions requested at its 33rd session (Seville, 2009), and recommended by the reinforced monitoring mission, in particular:

a) Definition and implementation of provisions to be included in a revised management plan, derived from participatory processes, to address threats derived from unregulated access to the site, absence of a public use plan and inadequate urban planning,

b) Further development of the submitted risk reduction and disaster recovery plan to include clear and precise course of action to inform visitors and residents of the actual and potential risks and to provide mitigation strategies as a matter of urgency,

c) Undertake a management effectiveness assessment and integration of the results into a revision of the management plan and related capacity building programmes,

d) Establishment and implementation of regulatory measures for the western access to the Sanctuary and finalize the commissioned public use plan,

e) Implementation of strategies to strengthen decision-making processes and governance at the property;

5. Considers that unresolved issues including access, risk management, public use, uncontrolled urban development at Machu Picchu village, inappropriate land uses, and governance issues constitute an imminent danger to the attributes that sustain the Outstanding Universal Value and integrity of the property, and requests the reapplication of the Reinforced Monitoring Mechanism;

6. Recommends that, given the major natural and structural threats facing the property, the State Party establish an international support panel to provide technical advice and support to the State Party, in order to advocate for the political will and resources needed to address governance and sustainable finance issues, to guide effective stakeholder involvement, to seek support for the implementation of the 2009 Action Plan, and to address the backlog of unaddressed management issues;

7. Requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 February 2011, a report on the state of conservation of the property and on the steps taken to implement the above mentioned recommendations, for examination by the World Heritage Committee at its 35th session in 2011, with a view to considering, in the absence of substantial progress, the possible inscription of the property on the List of World Heritage in Danger.

Report year: 2010
Peru
Date of Inscription: 1983
Category: Mixed
Criteria: (i)(iii)(vii)(ix)
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 34COM (2010)
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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