Affected by Climate Change
WHS where the OUV is already being eroded by effects of climate change (such as coral bleaching, retreat of the ice covers and rise in frequency / severity of wildfires).
|Cape Floral Region
|Examples where climate change has facilitated the spread of invasive alien species include Cape Floral Region Protected Areas (South Africa) .. Climate change, which is stimulating the growth of invasive woody plants, as well as increased drying has increased fire intensity and frequency. (IUCN outlook 2020) Alien plants pose the most severe threat to the continued existence of Fynbos ecosystems.
|The Atacama's dry weather has helped preserve the Chinchorro mummies for thousands of years, but some have rapidly deteriorated in the past decade, their skin melting into black ooze. According to Harvard scientists, climate change is causing microorganisms to attack the mummies' collagen. Stronger El Niño currents are behind the region's increasing humidity, meaning the mummies are endangered whether they're in a museum or buried in the desert.
|Changes and global warming are also a dangerous threat to the island, which is already suffering with more frequent and intense floods (Solomon Island Official Tourism 2017). In 2019, the SP reported that the impacts of climate change are increasingly felt by the communities in the ERWHP and that sea level rise has resulted in increasing water levels and salinity in Lake Tegano, reducing the harvest of taro and coconut. The SP also reported that long droughts are of particular concern. (IUCN reactive monitoring mission 2019). Also annual severe coral bleaching (IUCN Outlook 2020).
|Examples where climate change has facilitated the spread of invasive alien species include … Garajonay National Park (Spain). (IUCN outlook 2020)
|The great threat comes from global warming and climate change, already happening. Warmer weather has caused a retreat of the ice covers, increasing landslides and coastal and continental erosion by water, changing the ecology and the whole environment. Populations of several species are strongly affected by the declining sea ice environment. (Coastal WHS)
|Climate change is also associated with increasing frequency and severity of fires, as was exemplified by some sites which have faced unprecedented fires in 2019-2020, such as Gondwana Rainforests of Australia (Australia) (IUCN Outlook 2020). During the 2019-2020 Australian bushfire season, many regions of the Gondwana rainforest were devastated by bushfires affecting 53% of them. The combination of long-term drought (moisture deficiency) and extreme fire weather (high temperatures, strong winds, exceptionally low humidity) resulted in fire (2020 State of Conservation Report by State Party).
|Great Barrier Reef
|Climate change and global warming are responsible for the rising of seawater temperature, producing bleaching, a phenomenon affecting coral by which they lose their natural color and die. It is now (2020) assessed by IUCN as having a “critical” outlook. In 2020, a study has found that Australia's Great Barrier Reef has lost more than half of its corals since 1995 due to warmer seas driven by climate change.
|Climate change is threatening the heritage site. It is changing the altitudinal migration between the dry forest and the humid mountains of some species of birds, insects, and mammals (Colette 2009). The migration is expected to increase in coming years. Climate change has also reduced biodiversity in recent years. (Coastal WHS) Also Coral bleaching.
|Huascaran National Park
|Glaciers in Huascaran National Park (Peru) have shrunk by 15% since 2000 (see link); "The current and potential threats to the park are mainly associated with climate change and the pressure generated by the socioeconomic conditions of the populations" (IUCN outlook 2020)
|Kakadu National Park
|The forests continue to decline because of salinization driven by sea level rise associated with climate change (Bowman et al. 2010a). Climate change and global warming can also cause erosion in the tidal flats and swamps of mangroves, due the rising sea level (Coastal WHS).
|Los Alerces National Park
|Glaciers in Los Alerces National Park (Argentina) – #2 highest mass loss relative to 2000 (45.6%)
|Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve
|Climate change and extreme weather conditions are already affecting the World Heritage site itself, but also the butterfly habitat across the USA and Canada. Severe rain, snow and freezing temperatures caused mass mortalities of monarchs in the overwintering sites in 1981, 1992, 2002 and 2004, but particularly in March 2016. A severe storm and snowfalls in March 2016 also caused severe damage to many forest areas within the Biosphere Reserve (IUCN Outlook 2020).
|Climate change is also associated with increasing frequency and severity of fires, as was exemplified by some sites which have faced unprecedented fires in 2019-2020, such as Pantanal Conservation Area (Brazil). (IUCN Outlook 2020)
|Global warming is already changing the environment, especially on the coast, where erosion tends to increase. The problem is also serious in the glaciated areas: between 2000 and 2008, glaciers recessed in extensions of ca 3.7 km, and the melting tends to increase. (Coastal WHS)
|Three parallel rivers of Yunnan
|Glaciers in Three Parallel Rivers of Yunnan Protected Areas (China) – #1 highest mass loss relative to 2000 (57.2%) and also the fastest melting glacier on the List
|Waterton Glacier International Peace Park
|Glaciers in Waterton Glacier International Peace Park (Canada, United States of America) have lost 26.5% of their volume in 20 years; IUCN outlook 2020: "Climate change (glacier retreat due to warming climate) may cause significant impact to the site’s unique ecological complexes and adaptation for climate change effects will also be important."
|Glaciers in Western Tien-Shan (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan) have shrunk by 27% since 2000
Do you know of another WHS we could connect to Affected by Climate Change?
A connection should:
- Not be "self evident"
- Link at least 3 different sites
- Not duplicate or merely subdivide the "Category" assignment already identified on this site.
- Add some knowledge or insight (whether significant or trivial!) about WHS for the users of this site
- Be explained, with reference to a source