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2014 WHC

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Author Durian
#166 | Posted: 6 May 2014 11:18 
It is impossible to include Beihai in the Grand Canal for historic reason as Beihai was a part of imperial city as an extension of Forbidden City. No ship from Grand Canal will be allowed in the lake.

Anyway thanks to meltwaterfall map I noticed that when I went to Drum and Bell Towers, I used the road that pass the blue section! (⌒⌒)

Author winterkjm
#167 | Posted: 13 May 2014 00:14 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Waiting for Evaluation (5)
- Palestine: Land of Olives and Vines - Battir (Palestine)
- Great Himalayan National Park (India)
- Russian Kremlins (Russia)
- Bolgar Historical and Archaeological Complex (Russia)
- Mt. Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary (Philippines)

Apparently, the Russian Kremlins will not be evaluated this year. Therefore, we are only awaiting (4) evaluations. To summarize, the Palestine nomination, Battir is evaluated on a emergency basis, and will likely (once again) be controversial. Mt. Hamiguitan was recommended for deferral in 2013, but was over-ruled and given a referral. Bolgar was recommended by ICOMOS for rejection (Not Inscribe), but after a very long debate achieved a referral. India's Himalayan National Park nomination was originally given a deferral, but also managed a referral.

- Great Himalayan National Park (D)______________WHC= (R)
- Mt. Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary (D)______WHC= (R)
- Bolgar Historical and Archeological Complex (NI)___WHC= (R)

*All (3) of these nominations are facing a very different world heritage committee than last year. Philippines is a new committee member, while Russia's term has ended.

Author kkanekahn
#168 | Posted: 16 May 2014 23:26 | Edited by: kkanekahn 
all the evaluation of awaited nom are released in unesco website 8b2.add

Author elsslots
#169 | Posted: 17 May 2014 00:35 
unesco website 8b2.add

downsizing of tasmanian wilderness is rejected

Author elsslots
#170 | Posted: 17 May 2014 00:42 
Palestine: Land of Olives and Vines - Battir (Palestine) - No emergency and not enough OUV
Great Himalayan National Park (India)- Inscribe
Russian Kremlins (Russia) - no report indeed
Bolgar Historical and Archaeological Complex (Russia)- Inscribe (but ICOMOS not happy)
Mt. Hamiguitan Range Wildlife Sanctuary (Philippines) - Inscribe

Author kkanekahn
#171 | Posted: 17 May 2014 02:19 
so ab recommended 15 inscription & 3 extension. 2 referals have also chance to be in list.

Author kkanekahn
#172 | Posted: 17 May 2014 02:21 | Edited by: kkanekahn 
so ab recommended 2 sites from india after many years

Author winterkjm
#173 | Posted: 17 May 2014 10:56 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Bolgar Historical and Archaeological Complex (Russia)- Inscribe (but ICOMOS not happy)

Did ICOMOS feel obligated to follow the WHC recommendation for inscription, despite their inclination toward rejection? I thought ICOMOS had the choice to make whatever evaluation they saw fit, no? This is certainly what happened following the 2000 evaluation. During the debate on Bolgar last year, there was essentially a "planned for inscription" wording including on the evaluation. Was ICOMOS bound to a certain extent by this WHC ruling?

Nonetheless, it seems ICOMOS was expected to inscribe Bolgar, even if the criterion was not indicated by Russia in the first place! Seemingly, ICOMOS had to identify whatever possible criteria the nomination could remotely argue OUV. With a history of NI, D, R Bolgar is one of those nominations that stink of extreme lobbying and backdoor deals (15 years worth!).

Here is the 2013 ICOMOS evaluation: "In ICOMOS' view, neither the criteria nor Outstanding Universal Value have been justified on the basis of the material provided and that the conditions of integrity and authenticity cannot be met for the proposed significance."

Author Solivagant
#174 | Posted: 19 May 2014 03:26 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Very soon a number of us are going to be spending a good few hours watching the Web cast of the 2014 WHC and trying to follow what is going on - both in terms of the obvious procedures and in terms of the more nuanced personal and national interactions! !!

It may surprise you but, apparently, one Christoph Brumann, a Social Anthropologist at the Max Planck Institute has been carrying out "fieldwork research" at the last few WHCs!!

As far as I can discover he hasn't yet published a book or paper containing his conclusions - perhaps he hopes to attend a few more WHCs first! I have discovered, however, that he has an upcoming paper in the journal "Ethnic and Racial Studies" titled "Shifting Tides of World-Making in the UNESCO World Heritage Convention: Cosmopolitanisms Colliding. Ethnic and Racial Studies" So that is something to look forward to!!

Anway - this paper describes his attendances to date and could be of interest in "bringing to life" what is going on both in front of and behind the camera! An example of one comment - "many an ambassador representing a Committee state performs effectively while having read hardly a line themselves, relying on their accompanying experts and networking skills instead"!! Not entirely a surprise based on my viewing of the last couple of WHCs.
I also related to "debate zooms in on the choice between "The Committee notes with concern" and "The Committee notes with regret" in a decision text, and session progress slows to a snail's pace." and "confused as to what a cryptic decision actually means"!

Author elsslots
#175 | Posted: 19 May 2014 07:30 

nice find! I'll add it to our Resource page

Author elsslots
#176 | Posted: 21 May 2014 12:35 | Edited by: elsslots 
Update recommendations for Danger List (according to State of Conservation reports):

In danger 2014:
- Potosí (stabilization of the summit of Cerro Rico )
- Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape (further development)
- Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex (illegal logging and trade of rosewood)
- Palace of Westminster and Westminster Abbey (Elizabeth House development scheme)
- Selous Game Reserve (poaching)

Removal from danger list 2014:
- Ruins of Kilwa Kisiwani

Potential removal from danger list 2014:
- Jerusalem (draft decision will be made public during WHC session)

Potentially in danger 2015:
- Churches of Chiloe (mitigate impact of Castro Shopping Mall)
- Great Barrier Reef (coastal development, dumping of dredge material)
- Djenné (state of property and limited resources)

Potentially in danger 2016:
- Dubrovnik (cruise ship tourism, as well as of the planned sport and recreation centre )
- Venice (erosion, environmental impacts)

Author Solivagant
#177 | Posted: 21 May 2014 13:36 | Edited by: Solivagant 
Palace of Westminster and Westminster Abbey (Elizabeth House development scheme)

The Wikileaks cables included this para from 2008
"Ambassador Oliver said that the problem of balancing the natural growth of cities and maintaining outstanding universal value (OUV) is going to be a complicated problem for the WHC in the future, given the cases of London, Riga, Florence, St. Peterburg and other cities. Bandarin said that there is a new initiative on the subject of problematic urbanization of WH sites. The issue is now being referred to as the "contemporary role of historic urban areas". Bandarin said that the WHC is asking the Director General to help develop proposals that will go through the Executive Board and ultimately to the General Conference as the WHC is in need of some guidelines on difficult cases in this context. "

I don't remember anything coming out in the way of proposals on this subject - does anyone else??

2 months ago the UK High Court threw out claims by English Heritage and Westminster Council (who were also landed with £10k costs of the appeal) that the "UK Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government" had been "irrational" in not "calling in" a plan for the development, with the Judge saying
"'There is a view which could reasonably be taken that despite UNESCO's and the claimants' concerns, the impact is not such as would damage the Westminster World Heritage Site or other listed buildings and conservation areas.
'The defendant is, in exercising his judgment, entitled to regard the real risk, even the probability, of UNESCO placing the Westminster World Heritage Site on the danger list as acceptable.
'It may be a surprising view to take but I am not persuaded that it quite reaches the level of irrationality.'"

There are a lot of further judicial stages and negotiations to go through yet. As regards the WHC - I presume all sorts of "cables" are flashing around at the moment between UK and other governments trying to garner support for making a decision to "wait a bit" brefore pressing the "In Danger" button!!

If you want to numb your mind with convoluted legal arguments see - icle

Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape (further development)

Regarding this site - this is the letter sent by the UK government to the World Heritage Centre at end Jan 2014 (presumably the last date of submission for this year's WHC)
I can't find it among the upcoming WHC papers -

In response to the proposal that the property should be placed on the "In Danger" list the UK government states in summary "The States Party regards any such action as disproportionate given the limited negative impacts of the Hayle hoarbour proposal on the property as a whole and will oppose such a draft decision if this is proposed to the Committee this year. We request a meeting with the Centre and Advisory Bodies before the Committee meeting to discuss other possible ways to resolve this issue"
Again we shall see if "behind the scenes" diplomacy wins through on this occasion!

Author Solivagant
#178 | Posted: 21 May 2014 16:46 
A bit more about the possibility of the Cornwall and West Devon site being placed on the "In danger list"
This seems to be a nice example of ICOMOS coming back and "biting"!!!
The documentation shows that ICOMOS wanted this site "Referred" rather than inscribed in 2006. It was concerned, inter allia, about protection arrangements, the lack of a buffer zone and the planned developments at Hayle Harbour. ("ICOMOS considers that the proposed development at Hayle harbour would not be consistent with the importance of Hayle as the main port of the mining industry and thus a key part of the nominated cultural landscape")

It was however over-ruled by the WHC. I will copy at the end of this the record of the discussions at the WHC - UK appears to have mustered almost a "full house" of support - at least no country is recorded as opposing the inscription!! Now of course ICOMOS is claiming that - surprise, surprise - the planned developments are inconsistent with maintaining the OUV!!!
A point for Els - the Quay which is being developed is owned by the DUTCH finance and asset management group ING!!!!
So 2 connections?? "Controversial at Inscription" and "Built or owned by Dutch"???

Here is the lengthy record of the WHC discussion
ICOMOS "recommended referral of the nomination to allow the State Party to provide better legal protection and create buffer zones. It had some concern about micro-management by the different villages and the development of Hayle harbour.
IUCN pointed out that insufficient consideration had been given to the fact that the site was one of the highly polluted areas of the country and recommended the inclusion of decontamination in the management plan.
The Delegation of India requested clarification of the affirmation by the State Party that buffer zones could be detrimental to the site.
The Observer Delegation of the United Kingdom reassured the Committee that legal protection was in place and had proved efficient for 60 years through special plans. It also drew attention to the fact that the Operational Guidelines stipulated that in exceptional cases a site could be inscribed without a buffer zone. In the case under consideration a buffer zone was not required, bearing in mind that it would damage the site. However, Cornwall as a whole could be considered a buffer zone.
The Delegation of the United States of America recommended inclusion of historic waste in paragraph 4 of the draft Decision.
ICOMOS agreed that historic waste should be taken in consideration for the management plan.
The Delegation of Kenya recommended taking into account the human factor, namely the miners, and agreed with the Observer Delegation of the United Kingdom that a buffer zone would not be required and that the development of the harbour should not be overly restricted.
The Delegation of Norway said there was some confusion in the statements by ICOMOS acknowledging on one hand that the United Kingdom possessed one of the world's best systems of legal protection, yet finding its implementation insufficient. How could the United Kingdom improve its implementation?
ICOMOS pointed out that the plans were not yet implemented at the site.
The Delegation of Canada stated that the site clearly possessed outstanding universal value in the category of industrial sites, which was under-represented. The recommendations of ICOMOS were unclear as to whether it recommended a larger or smaller site.
ICOMOS referred to subparagraph 2 (a) of the draft Decision and suggested that the State Party might consider reducing the area to be inscribed.
The Delegation of Israel said it would support inscription of the site and asked whether that could be done within the framework of a serial nomination of mining sites.
In response to a question by the Delegation of Norway as to whether there was legal protection or not, the Observer Delegation of the United Kingdom assured the Committee that all parts of the proposed site were legally protected.
The Delegation of India proposed amending subparagraph 2 (c) concerning buffer zones.
The Delegation of Israel referred to paragraph 160 which concerned guaranties regarding meaning and implications of the Operational Guidelines.
The Delegation of Canada made reference to the similar case of Oman where there was no question about the property's outstanding universal value, but an issue around legal protection. Canada supported inscription and proposed that the State Party be asked to submit a report to the World Heritage Centre, for examination at the 31st session, confirming that adequate protective measures are in place.
The Delegation of Lithuania supported the inscription of the site and pointed out the many redundant requirements of the draft Decision. For example, a buffer zone would not be required.
The Delegation of the United States of America said it considered that the ICOMOS recommendations were not clear enough and would propose to delete subparagraph 2 (c) of the draft Decision and inscribe the site.
The Delegation of Morocco favoured the proposal made by the Delegation of Canada for an inscription with a recommendation for the protection of the site.
The Delegation of India suggested deleting paragraphs 2 (b) and 2 (c).
The Delegations of Peru, Spain and Cuba indicated that they would favour inscribing the site on the World Hritage List.
The Delegation of Chile supported the proposal of the Delegation of the Canada.
The Delegation of Tunisia gave its support to the Delegation of Canada.
The Delegation of Spain stated its support for the Delegation of Canada's amendment."
The Delegation of Israel proposed amending paragraph 2 (c), noting the statement made by the State Party on buffer zones.
The Chairperson declared Decision 30 COM 8B.50 adopted as amended.
The Observer Delegation of the United Kingdom thanked the Committee"
I bet the UK Delegation was very pleased!!

Author Durian
#179 | Posted: 22 May 2014 00:20 | Edited by: Durian 
Dong Phayayen-Khao Yai Forest Complex (illegal logging and trade of rosewood)

Intersting that the reason behind illegal logging is Chinese furniture demand! tinction eritage-site

Rosewood at 50,000 USD per cubic meter!!! No surprise for the logging.

Author Khuft
#180 | Posted: 25 May 2014 13:11 | Edited by: Khuft 
The 2014 WHC meeting will also analyse "border clarifications" - which it probably does every year - but what for me was a surprise was the commentary on page 11 of the following doc regarding the Route of Santiago de Compostella (Spanish part):

"The State Party has provided clear maps indicating the location as well as the boundaries
of 1912 components. The State Party has also provided a serial property table indicating the
location and the surface of each element."

Didn't they originally state that the full route between the border and Santiago was inscribed? After all, it seems that it has almost 2000 component parts (which tops even the Spanish rock art site). The maps can be found here:

PS: after reviewing the maps, it seems that after all the route itself is inscribed, and Spain now simply added the maps for 1912 associated sites.

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