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World Heritage Convention

Decision 39 COM 7B.8
The Sundarbans (Bangladesh) (N 798)

The World Heritage Committee,

  1. Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/7B,
  2. Recalling Decision 38 COM 7B.64, adopted at its 38th session (Doha, 2014),
  3. Notes that the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) for the dredging of the Pashur River, adjacent to the property, did not include a specific assessment of the potential impacts on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (OUV), and requests the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre an assessment of potential impacts on OUV, in accordance with IUCN’s World Heritage Advice Note on Environmental Assessment, and to ensure activities are not conducted before the revised EIA is submitted to the World Heritage Centre and reviewed by IUCN;
  4. Reiterates its request to the State Party to undertake a comprehensive Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) in order to assess the indirect and cumulative impacts from the power plants and other developments in the vicinity of the property, including a specific assessment of potential impacts on its OUV;
  5. Also requests the State Party to provide further details on the mitigation measures taken for the power plant project, which should fully consider the findings of the SEA;
  6. Regrets that the ecological monitoring data for the property requested by the Committee in Decision 35 COM 7B.11 has not been provided, and urges the State Party to submit the results of the ecological monitoring programme for the property without delay, to the World Heritage Centre for review by IUCN, ensuring that the impact of climate change on the OUV is documented, as initially requested in Decision 33 COM 7B.12;
  7. Further requests the State Party to continue monitoring the effects of the December 2014 oil spill on the aquatic environment, and to take measures to prevent such accidents, drawing on the lessons learned so as to strengthen its oil spill preparedness and response capacity, in particular in view of the anticipated increases in river navigation related to the power plant developments upstream;
  8. Requests furthermore the State Party to invite a joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN Reactive Monitoring mission to the property to review the state of conservation of the property, and the potential impacts of the thermal power plant development and dredging of Pashur River;
  9. Requests moreover the State Party to submit to the World Heritage Centre, by 1 December 2016, an updated report, including a 1-page executive summary, 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.
Decision Code
39 COM 7B.8
States Parties 1
Properties 1
State of conservation reports
2015 The Sundarbans