Vth World Parks Congress
7-17 September 2003, Durban, South Africa

Reader, please note. This is the unabridged text of the recomendations made by the IUCN, but formatted in a compact and printer friendly version of HTML. The conference convened participants in 'streams' according to the 32 main recommendations listed below. These recommendations represent the present state of thinking about protected areas and their problems and are for this reason alone worth studying.

1. Strengthening Institutional and Societal Capacities for Protected Area Management in the 21st Century
2. Strengthening Individual and Group Capacities for Protected Area Management in the 21st Century
3. Protected Areas Learning Network
4. Building Comprehensive and Effective Protected Area Systems
5. Climate Change and Protected Areas
6. Strengthening Mountain Protected Areas as a Key Contribution to Sustainable Mountain 7. Development
7. Financial Security for Protected Areas
8. Private Sector Funding of Protected Areas
9. Integrated Landscape Management to Support Protected Areas
10. Policy Linkages between Relevant International Conventions and Programmes in Integrating  Protected Areas in the Wider Landscape/Seascape
11. A Global Network to Support the Development of Transboundary Conservation Initiatives
12. Tourism as a Vehicle for Conservation and Support of Protected Areas
13. Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas
14. Cities and Protected Areas
15. Peace, Conflict and Protected Areas
16. Good Governance of Protected Areas
17. Recognising and Supporting a Diversity of Governance Types for Protected Areas
18. Management Effectiveness Evaluation to Support Protected Area Management
19. IUCN Protected Area Management Categories
20. Preventing and Mitigating Human-Wildlife Conflicts
21. The World Heritage Convention
22. Building a Global System of Marine and Coastal Protected Area Networks
23. Protecting Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Processes through Marine Protected Areas beyond National Jurisdiction
24. Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas
25. Co-management of Protected Areas
26. Community Conserved Areas
27. Mobile Indigenous Peoples and Conservation
28. Protected Areas: Mining and Energy
29. Poverty and Protected Areas
30. Africa’s Protected Areas
31. Protected Areas, Freshwater and Integrated River Basin Management Frameworks
32. Strategic Agenda for Communication, Education and Public Awareness for Protected Areas

Recommendation 01
Strengthening Institutional and Societal Capacities for Protected Area Management in the 21st Century

During the 21st Century pressure on protected areas will increase as a result of such global change issues as:

Current management structures for protected areas were designed under different conditions and are not necessarily able to adapt to these new pressures. Conservation will only succeed if we can build learning institutions, organizations, and networks and enable conservation practitioners to identify and solve their own problems and take advantage of opportunities. In particular, we need to empower all stakeholders to fulfill their role in protected area management.

Capacity development at the institutional and societal level must include:

In light of these points, the PARTICIPANTS in Stream on Capacity Building: Developing the Capacity to Manage at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that governments, inter-governmental organizations, NGOs, local communities and civil society:

a. RAISE awareness of the value of protected areas and the benefits they provide to society and enhance general commitment to support Protected Areas;
b. ADJUST current policies, laws, planning and management instruments, and institutional frameworks, to increase capacity for protected management at all levels. Specifically,
i. Promote robust and complementary national, state, regional, municipal, community, and private protected area systems;
ii. Integrate conservation objectives into land /sea use and regional and sectoral planning at all levels and integrate protected areas planning and management into the wider land and seascape;
iii. Promote, coordinate and support systematic applied social, economic, political and biophysical scientific research related to identified needs and priorities, informing protected area management and activities aimed at conserving, monitoring, and using biodiversity in a sustainable manner in the face of rapid global change;
iv. Build coherent national frameworks for conservation of biodiversity and protected areas and harmonize sectoral policies and laws with conservation policies and laws at the constitutional level;
v. Establish mechanisms to harmonize policies and efforts among government agencies and other civil society organizations responsible for conservation and sustainable development;
vi. Elaborate and implement National Strategic Plans for Protected Area Systems and appropriate strategic and operational planning instruments for each protected area;
vii. Ensure that the staff of protected areas and their management bodies have sufficient decision making authority to achieve the management and conservation objectives of protected area systems;
viii. Encourage and support the establishment of new protected areas and of co-management agreements by and between local, regional and national governments, non-governmental entities, the private sector, local and indigenous communities and other stakeholders;
ix. Ensure that protected area management bodies (including decentralized and devolved statutory authorities, groups engaged in co-management and community based management) have the skills, knowledge and abilities to take on these responsibilities;
x. Adopt mechanisms to enable representation and participation of all protected area stakeholders at national, regional and local levels;
xi. Establish monitoring and evaluation mechanisms based on protected area objectives and using compatible methods, indicators and site specific standards to ensure management effectiveness and assure biological and cultural integrity;
2. PROMOTE local ownership and sustainability of capacity development programmes by ensuring that:
a. Protected Area institutions maintain core funding for new and continuing capacity development as part of their ongoing business plans;
b. Capacity development programmes are designed and conducted by the beneficiaries themselves in collaboration with government at all levels, partnership, international agencies, NGOs and other relevant bodies, based on mutually agreed needs and priorities.

Recommendation 02
Strengthening Individual and Group Capacities for Protected Area Management in the 21st Century

Effective management of protected areas in the context of global change requires that managers, protected areas staff including rangers, local communities and other stakeholders have the knowledge, attitudes, skills, capabilities and tools to plan, manage and monitor protected areas. Managers and stakeholders also need the skills to be able to establish and maintain the complex relationships and networks that are essential for sustainable and effective management of protected areas.

With these points in mind PARTICIPANTS in Stream on Capacity Building: Developing the capacity to manage at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that IUCN and the World Commission on Protected Areas:

a. Promotes and supports national and international collaborative capacity development activities through which stakeholders at all levels can acquire and share best practices; develop appropriate responses to change; and thereby enable and empower themselves to play their full role in protected area management by:
i. Building 'learning organizations';
ii. Supporting learning exchanges for all stakeholders;
iii. Developing "communities of practice" for protected area management;
iv. Promoting learner-centered approaches;
b. Supports learning processes within workplace and community settings which are flexible, contextual and responsive, that builds on traditional knowledge and practices and that enhance two-way learning and sharing;

c. Supports the enhancement of capacity for protected area managers, local and indigenous communities and other stakeholders to work together by enhancing their skills in areas such as:

i. Facilitation, negotiation and conflict resolution;
ii. Change management processes to address values, attitudes of all stakeholders and relationships among them;
iii. Participatory planning and joint management; and
iv. Financial and institutional management;
d. Encourages the full participation of local and indigenous communities and individuals by building confidence in the rule of law: assuring transparency, due process and access to public records;
2. RECOMMEND that protected area authorities recruit, develop and support staff in ways that will encourage and maintain high levels of commitment and performance by:
a. Employing and investing in the personal development of local and indigenous people living inside and around the protected area;

b. Provide all protected areas staff (in particular rangers, wardens and forest guards, who face hardships and threats in carrying out their jobs) with adequate living, working, health and safety and security conditions by providing management support, appropriate equipment and training;

c. Ensure continuous and systematic institutional capacity development linking training to performance;

d. Encourage career development and retention of staff by relating salary, benefits and progression to performance.

3. RECOMMEND that the World Commission on Protected Areas move towards common standards of competency by:
a. Agreeing generic global competency standards for protected areas staff, which can be adapted at local, regional and national levels;

b. Encourage and enable use of standards and self-assessments to support improved effectiveness of protected area staff and training.

4. RECOMMEND the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas coordinate a consortium of international organizations, training institutions, and other organizations to:
a. Develop and conduct campaigns for higher level decision-makers to develop understanding that protected areas and the goods and services they provide are critical for the well-being of society as a whole;

b. Encourage partnerships between training institutions, protected area agencies, private sector and community-based organizations for the design and implementation of responsive training;

c. Promote establishment and strengthening of regional networks of trainers and training institutions for capacity development in protected areas management;

5. RECOMMEND that the IUCN through the Task Force On Capacity Building of World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) elaborate an action plan for the next 10 years based on the work and conclusions of the Vth World Parks Congress;

6. RECOMMEND that the World Heritage Committee take into account the World Parks Congress recommendations on capacity development and link World Heritage training activities with the global protected areas capacity development agenda.

Recommendation 03
Protected Areas Learning Network

Many protected area managers and policy makers, including local and indigenous communities and other stakeholders, have insufficient access to new knowledge, information, and guidelines coming out of science, traditional knowledge, and field practice.

Furthermore, they may have little opportunity to share what they are learning from their own work with policy, strategies, and field practices. Managers often learn of new topics of considerable significance to their ability to ensure the sustainability of their sites only after long periods of time. Typically, only those managers that are fortunate enough to participate in international events learn about new practices and opportunities .

A new mechanism is needed that will enable managers to share experience and learn from one another more efficiently. New guidelines from science, traditional knowledge, and practice need to be exchanged quickly so that managers can ensure that their practices are up to date.

The Ecosystems, Protected Areas, and People project of IUCN's World Commission on Protected Areas, in partnership with the World Resources Institute, The Nature Conservancy, Conservation International, and UNESCO, propose, with the catalytic support of the Global Environment Facility among others, the establishment of the Protected Areas Learning Network (PALNet). This interactive web site will enable interested individuals around the world to obtain guidance from science, traditional knowledge and peers, and in turn, upload their own experience on issues of common interest.

Of particular interest for development during the early stage of the program are the issues and options related to the impacts and opportunities surrounding protected areas as the result of global change factors.

This program will complement the Clearing House Mechanism (CHM) of the Convention on Biological Diversity, and the UNEP/Conservation Monitoring Centre, and is designed to avoid duplication wherever possible.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Capacity Building: Developing the capacity to manage at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):


  1. The proposal to establish the Protected Areas Learning Network be accepted and supported institutionally;
  2. WCPA and its partners be invited to develop the full program as proposed following adequate consultation with the user community;
  3. A Steering Committee for PALNet be established under the leadership of WCPA, to guide the development and management of the program;
  4. The thematic technical working groups and task forces of WCPA and other parts of the UNION serve to backstop the scientific, technical and policy elements of the program; and,
  5. IUCN and its partners and donors consider means to raise sufficient funding to develop the program and ensure its sustainability.
Note: This motion is endorsed by WCPA, CI, TNC, UNESCO, Commission on Environmental, Economic, and Social Policy (CEESP) and IUCN.

Recommendation 04
Building Comprehensive and Effective Protected Area Systems

Economic, cultural, intrinsic, aesthetic and spiritual values of biological diversity are experienced by all people. At the same time the increasing rate of loss of biological diversity will seriously undermine the quality of life of future human generations unless this issue is addressed as a matter of urgency. Ongoing and extremely rapid human-induced changes, such as habitat loss and spread of alien invasive species, continue to erode biodiversity, and species ranges are shifting due to climate change.

New analyses presented at this Congress have shown that the global PA network is far from finished, with significant gaps in the coverage of Protected Area systems for threatened species, globally important sites, habitats and realms.

These gaps and changes require the expansion of existing, and the strategic creation of new, protected areas while ensuring the connectivity of suitable habitat between them.

A reduction in the rate of loss of biological diversity can be achieved through protected area systems in all ecoregions of the world that are comprehensive, ecologically and biologically viable, representative, and effectively managed. Threatened species, particularly those listed in the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, must be effectively conserved in these networks of protected areas.

The target to achieve “a significant reduction in the current rate of loss of biological diversity” by the year 2010, agreed by the 6th Conference of the Parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (Decision VI/26), restated in the Hague Ministerial Declaration of April 2002, and endorsed by the world’s leaders at the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in September 2002 remains valid.

The WSSD Plan of Implementation states that biological diversity plays “a critical role” in “overall sustainable development and poverty eradication” and that “biodiversity is currently being lost at unprecedented rates due to human activities”. Protected area systems should ensure that valuable ecosystem services are sustained.

Biodiversity is not evenly distributed across the globe, thus an effective network of protected areas to reduce the rate of loss of biological diversity should be based on an adequate understanding of the patterns of distribution of species, habitats, ecosystems and ecological processes across all scales. Systematic conservation plans and decision-support tools should be used to identify targets for protection based on such understanding.

The World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA) is a vital tool to measure the efforts of governments and civil society to build comprehensive protected area networks. This database is maintained by the UNEP-World Conservation Monitoring Centre with the support and assistance of the WDPA Consortium that includes members of international conservation NGOs and other interested agencies. The importance of the database has been reflected in the UNEP Governing Council decision of 2003, implemented through a MOU signed between IUCN and UNEP at WPC 2003 and supported by the WDPA Consortium.

Many Multilateral Environmental Agreements, notably the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, and the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, along with many regional agreements, recognise the importance of protecting biodiversity as a priority for all nations.

With these points in mind, participants in the workshop on Building Comprehensive Protected Area Systems concluded that nations need to consider biodiversity-based targets as a means of maximising the coverage and representation of biological diversity and, in particular, threatened components of biological diversity in their protected area systems.

In addition to the conventional system of protected areas based on IUCN designated categories, a range of opportunities exist for enhancing coverage of protected areas, including community conservation areas, community managed areas, and private and indigenous reserves.

For protected areas to meet their biodiversity conservation and economic development objectives, they must receive adequate financial support. However, it is noted that many countries with the highest levels of biodiversity are challenged by inadequate financial means and by the imperative of poverty alleviation. Many countries therefore compromise on creating and/or effectively managing a comprehensive and effective protected area system even when it is not in the national or global interest.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the workshop stream on Building Comprehensive Protected Area Systems at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. URGE governments, non-government organizations and local communities to maximise representation and persistence of biodiversity in comprehensive protected area networks in all ecoregions by 2012, focusing especially on threatened and under-protected ecosystems and those species that qualify as globally threatened with extinction under the IUCN criteria. This will require that:

a. Systematic conservation planning tools that use information on species, habitats and ecological processes to identify gaps in the existing system be applied to assist in the selection of new protected areas at the national level;

b. All globally threatened species are effectively conserved in situ with the following immediate targets:

i. all Critically Endangered and Endangered species globally confined to single sites are effectively conserved in situ by 2006;
ii. all other globally Critically Endangered and Endangered species are effectively conserved in situ by 2008;
iii. all other globally threatened species are effectively conserved in situ by 2010; and
iv. sites that support internationally important populations of congregatory and/or restricted-range species are adequately conserved by 2010;
c. Viable representations of every terrestrial, freshwater and marine ecosystem are effectively conserved within protected areas, with the following immediate targets:
i. A common global framework for classifying and assessing the status of ecosystems established by 2006;
ii. quantitative targets for each ecosystem type identified by 2008; and
iii. viable representations of every threatened or under-protected ecosystem conserved by 2010;
d. Changes in biodiversity and key ecological processes affecting biodiversity in and around protected areas are identified and managed;

e. Regional landscape and seascape planning should consider locally generated maps, and incorporate zoning and management planning processes to assist in designing and enhancing comprehensive protected area networks that conserve wide-ranging and migratory species and sustain ecosystem services;

f. Protected area systems are established by 2006 that adequately cover all large intact ecosystems that hold globally significant assemblages of species and/or provide ecosystem services and processes;

g. Increase the coverage of protected areas in freshwater ecosystems as proposed by the Convention on Biological Diversity Recommendation VIII/2 to establish and maintain a “comprehensive, adequate and representative system of protected inland water ecosystems… using integrated catchment/watershed/river basin management” by 2012; and

h. Create a representative network of marine protected areas by 2012, as stated in the WSSD Plan of Implementation;

2. URGE the Parties to the CBD to make the achievement of the above-mentioned targets possible by adopting a strong program of work and consider legal mechanisms on protected areas at COP7 that ensures the establishment of a representative global network of protected areas. In support of the Program of work, establish an effective mechanism to measure progress towards the achievement of the above-mentioned targets and ensure the provision of adequate financing to support such a network, in accordance with Article 20 and Article 8(m) of the CBD;

3. CALL on governments, local authorities, donors and development assistance agencies, the private sector, and other stakeholders to financially support the strategic expansion of the global network of protected areas as well as the effective management of existing protected areas. Whilst taking appropriate steps to defray the attendant human opportunity costs where appropriate;

4. URGE governments to use international instruments, such as the Convention for the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage and the Convention on Wetlands of International Importance, to enhance the protection given to sites, and pass domestic legislation to implement their convention obligations, with a view to achieving the targets outlined above;

5. CALL on governments to develop and implement innovative plans and legislation involving all stakeholders to conserve biodiversity and ecological processes effectively under various conditions of land and resource ownership and usage rights, as well as across national boundaries;

6. URGE governments, non-government organizations, donors, private sector and development assistance agencies to promote socio-economic and cultural benefits of protected areas to foster support for the expansion of protected area networks;

7. REQUEST the consortium of institutions responsible for maintaining and managing the World Database on Protected Areas to continue the process of enhancing the quality of the data, and making these publicly available and accessible;

8. URGE the Parties to the CBD to request all governments to provide annual updates of information to the WDPA;

9. URGE the private sector to adopt best practices that do not threaten, compromise or thwart the achievement of the aforementioned targets and to assist in the establishment of a comprehensive ecologically and biologically viable and representative network of protected areas;

10. REQUEST the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas to establish a task force on conservation planning to guide countries in the achievement of the targets outlined in this recommendation;

11. CALL on parties to the World Heritage Convention to encourage the nomination of global physiographic, natural and cultural phenomena as large-scale multi-states serial World Heritage Routes to serve as frameworks for local and trans-boundary World Heritage sites and protected areas; and

12. URGE governments, local authorities, private sector, donors and development assistance agencies to ensure that further work towards building comprehensive protected areas systems takes full account of the rights, interest and aspirations of indigenous peoples, as well as of their desire to have their lands, territories and resources secured and protected for their own social and cultural survival.

Recommendation 05
Climate Change and Protected Areas

Nature is dynamic. Science and practice have demonstrated that the one constant in nature is change itself. Global change encompasses many facets – biophysical, socio-economic and political. Almost all of these have profound implications for protected areas. Whereas the socio-economic and political issues have been addressed in other recommendations, participants in several workshop streams at the Vth World Parks Congress recognized that biophysical changes, in particular climate change, demand specific attention. Climate change is global in both cause and effects, altering basic physical parameters of the environment. Climate change and its synergies with other global changes is a new and unprecedented challenge confronting protected areas.

Ecosystems and species will change as climate changes, requiring new protected areas and new management strategies in existing protected areas. Polar ice and glaciers are melting; sea levels are rising. Climate change is exacerbating the problems of invasive alien species and diseases, displacing native species. In combination with growing human populations, human settlement patterns and land use changes, climate change is exerting new demands on limited resources. These changes will require new resources for protected areas to meet their goal of conserving biodiversity and ecosystem services.

Many of the impacts of climate change on biodiversity will occur in tropical countries while the major sources of global greenhouse gases are industrialized countries. This creates equity issues requiring new international funding mechanisms.

Atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations leading to global climate change that contribute to species extinctions constitute “dangerous interference in the climate system”. Recent research suggests that climate change associated with doubled pre-industrial CO2 levels may result in high numbers of plant and animal extinctions. Since any extinction is unacceptable, urgent stabilization of global greenhouse gas concentrations is required.

Therefore a two-fold response is needed to protect biodiversity in the face of climate change:

a. Limitation of climate change by stabilizing global greenhouse gas concentrations; and
b. The institution of new conservation strategies that include elements such as the creation of new protected areas that are specifically designed to be resilient to change and the creation of corridors to protect biodiversity from the effects of climate change.

Therefore, recognizing input from other streams, PARTICIPANTS in the workshop stream on Building Comprehensive Protected Area Systems at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. CALL ON governments and citizens to recognize the threat posed to protected areas from climate and other global changes;

2. URGE governments to stabilize global greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere at a level that prevents species from becoming threatened or extinct due to climate change, by implementing policies (including the ratification of the Kyoto Protocol) that will lead to reductions in greenhouse gas emissions within their borders and globally;

3. URGE individuals to curtail their consumption of carbon-based fuels as an example to governments and other individuals, and urge individual protected areas to lead by example in installing and interpreting clean energy technologies;

4. CALLS ON IUCN and its members to pursue regional analyses of the impact of climate change on protected areas and the consequent need for new conservation strategies, including:

a. Immediate application and ongoing refinement of existing knowledge and tools for building resilience into protected area networks;
b. A near-term, 5-year goal of freshwater, marine and terrestrial pilot regional studies of climate change impacts on protected areas, each incorporating Regional Climate Models and multi-species modelling; and
c. A long-term,10-year goal of establishing a program of ongoing regional studies of climate change impacts on protected areas covering all areas of the globe;
5. URGE governments, donors and development assistance agencies to establish a global financing mechanism to cover the additional costs incurred by protected areas due to climate change;

6. CALL ON governments, non-government organizations and local communities to identify and designate protected areas that increase representation of species and ecosystems, the persistence of which is found to be jeopardized due to climate change, including:

a. All threatened species by 2012; and
b. All species and ecosystems by 2015;
7. RECOMMEND the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas to:
a. Expand partnerships and deepen their expertise in the provision of advice to practitioners, management agencies and communities on options and guidelines for adapting protected areas to the forces of global change; and
b. Identify and communicate best practices to establish methods to anticipate the impacts and opportunities from global change, and adapt management to those changes;
8. RECOMMEND that the task force on climate change of the IUCN Species Survival Commission work with the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas to make available to protected area managers the names of species which may be at particular risk of extinction due to climate change within their region;

9. RECOMMEND that Governments, and protected area managers and planners, include concepts of resilience and adaptive management of protected areas to mitigate the impacts of climate change, including designing and managing protected area networks flexibly to accommodate adaptations to change; and

10. RECOMMEND that the Vth World Parks Congress evaluate the effectiveness of efforts to incorporate climate change into protected area management and other conservation strategies.

Recommendation 06
Strengthening Mountain Protected Areas as a Key Contribution to Sustainable Mountain Development

Mountains and their protected areas provide "Benefits Beyond Boundaries" for a significant proportion of humanity, in both mountain and lowland areas. In particular, they are the water towers of the world. 
The establishment and effective management of an adequate and representative system or network of Mountain Protected Areas are essential ingredients of sustainable development in mountains as well as a paramount means of conserving biological and cultural diversity. Mountain areas are often along international frontiers where conflict occurs.

Chapter 13, the Mountain Chapter, of Agenda 21 from UN Conference on Environment and Development (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; 1992) calls on all countries with mountains to strengthen national capacity for sustainable mountain development, and to prepare long-term mountain action plans.

2002, the International Year of Mountains, provided a remarkable and diverse array of events at local, national and international levels, which placed mountain ecosystems squarely on the global agenda as a priority concern.

The Bishkek Global Mountain Summit (Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan; October-November 2002), and the World Summit on Sustainable Development (Johannesburg, South Africa; August-September 2002), reinforced these calls for action.

The close relationship between mountain biodiversity and protected areas will be a focus on the forthcoming Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; 2004).

With these points in mind a Pre-World Parks Congress Workshop on Mountain Protected Areas, held in South Africa's uKhahlamba-Drakensberg Park World Heritage Site (September 5-8, 2003), involving 60 managers, scientists and policy makers representing 23 countries:

1. ENDORSE the establishment of an adequate and representative network of Mountain Protected Areas in all mountain regions as a key part of sustainable mountain development, including appropriate conservation linkages to adjacent landscapes and seascapes and working with local communities and land managers;

2. WELCOME the support for Mountain Protected Areas from outdoor recreation interests, as expressed in the Environmental Objectives and Guidelines of the International Mountaineering and Climbing Federation (UIAA), published during the International Year of Mountains;

3. URGE IUCN - the World Conservation Union, to:

a. Support the Mountain Initiative Task Force as an Inter-Commission group involving primarily the World Commission on Protected Areas and the Commission on Ecosystem Management, with opportunities for other Commissions to contribute as appropriate;
b. Give particular attention to implementing the WCPA 2004-2008 Mountain Strategy, as endorsed by the Mountain Initiative Task Force;
c. Engage fully in the International Partnership for Sustainable Development in Mountain Regions, as a method of implementing Chapter 13 of Agenda 21;
d. Continue to press for recognition, during this International Year of Freshwater and beyond, of the vital role of Mountain Protected Areas in safeguarding water quality and quantity;
e. Provide leadership to highlight the vital relationship between biodiversity, mountains and protected areas as the CBD considers these topics at its 2004 meetings;
f. Give a prominent role to mountains and their protected areas at the 2004 World Conservation Congress; and
g. Provide a forum to discuss and advance transboundary protected areas in contributing to the conservation of regional biodiversity, recognizing the special circumstances of transboundary mountain communities, and resolving regional conflicts through mechanisms such as Peace Parks.

Recommendation 07
Financial Security for Protected Areas

Protected areas deserve significant financial support owing to the tremendous benefits they provide. The International Community agreed at the World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) to work toward the goal of significantly reducing the loss of biodiversity by 2010. However, a significant funding gap means that protected area system managers are being increasingly required to devote resources to raise their own funding and the protected areas are facing greater degradation.

As an indicator of this need, it is estimated that protected area budgets in the early 1990’s totalled only about 20 percent of the estimated US$20-30 billion annually over the next 30 years required to establish and maintain a comprehensive protected area system including terrestrial, wetland, and marine ecosystems.

Nonetheless, there remain government policies and other institutional obstacles, which intentionally and unintentionally restrict the flow of funding to protected areas, such as:

a. Insufficient priority allocated to the conservation of nature and associated cultural values against other competing budget programs;
b. Revenues from tourist income and environmental services provided by protected areas (e.g., water charges) not being earmarked for protected area management;
c. Institutional barriers restricting the flow of funding to protected areas;
d. Inappropriate management structures that fail to channel funding to protected area management;
e. Lack of mechanisms to encourage donor organizations to participate in supporting protected areas; and
f. Limited use of business planning at both a protected area systems level as well as for specific protected areas.
To help address these problems the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas has implemented an initiative on Sustainable Financing.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Financing: Building a secure financial future at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

RECOMMEND governments, national and international non governmental organizations, international conventions, indigenous and local communities, and civil society to:

1. OPERATIONALISE the WSSD biodiversity goal and assess the cost of achieving it;

2. ENSURE that the financial mechanisms adopted to increase protected area revenue do not lead to the degradation of biodiversity or the destruction of the natural and cultural heritage;

3. COMMUNICATE more effectively the results of investments in protected areas, to the global and national community to gain greater support for the funding of protected areas, including both conservation results and socio-economic benefits of protected areas;

4. INCREASE, diversify and stabilise the financial flows to protected areas and biodiversity conservation including through appropriate incentives and support for the implementation of diverse portfolios of financing mechanisms and cost-effective management approaches for terrestrial, wetland, and marine protected area networks and systems, so as to ensure that long term conservation objectives are fully met in each ecoregion of the world;

5. ENSURE that there is proper valuation of the goods and services provided by protected areas and biodiversity in general so that decisions about economic development are made with the full understanding of the costs as well as the benefits and the social impacts involved;

6. REMOVE policy and institutional barriers to sustainable financing solutions, including to the effective allocation of resources across protected area networks and systems, so that funding from both new and existing sources, and revenue generated by the protected areas can be fully and efficiently directed to protected area management; where such removal does not compromise biodiversity, natural and cultural heritage objectives;

7. ENSURE that protected areas, and the surrounding local and indigenous communities, as primary beneficiaries, are granted access to the benefits from the increasing number of opportunities to gain remuneration from ecosystem services provided by protected areas. These comprise existing sources such as tourism-related revenues as well as new opportunities like the provision of clean air and water, flood defence and disaster prevention, soil conservation, conservation of genetic material, recreational opportunities and carbon sequestration;

8. URGE donors, government, and the private sector to support the establishment of trust and endowment funds for the conservation of biodiversity, as well as support other sustainable financing mechanisms, such as debt swaps, and the inclusion of support for biodiversity and the environment in countries’ Poverty Reduction Strategies;

9. IMPROVE coordination of financial sources for protected areas based on jointly agreed strategies established with all relevant stakeholders; to support coordination, improve the quality and dissemination of conservation funding information;

10. INCREASE significantly future replenishments of the GEF to support the sustainable management of protected areas in developing countries through support for sustainable financing mechanisms;

11. ENCOURAGE governments at all levels to increase the financial flows to protected areas by reducing and redirecting funding currently allocated to subsidies for fishing, agriculture, and other sectors, that contribute to environmental degradation and biodiversity loss;

12. ENSURE, where appropriate, that environmental compensation payments from economic activities are effectively channelled to protected areas or ecosystem restoration; and

13. FOCUS greater attention on increasing the cost effectiveness of protected area financing through improved budgeting, financial planning and the use of innovative arrangements such as conservation easements, direct incentive payments, tax credits, and other market-based transactions.

Recommendation 08
Private Sector Funding of Protected Areas

There is a universal need to provide adequate funding to protected areas to ensure sustained conservation of biodiversity, natural and cultural heritage without compromise. At the same time there is increasing desire from the private sector to engage with protected area managers on a mutually beneficial basis. Nevertheless, policy and institutional barriers exist, which may restrict the involvement of the private sector in the management and funding of protected areas. These are exacerbated by lack of transparency and effective mechanisms for equitable participation in decision-making.

Further, protected areas system managers are generally not familiar with the most appropriate forms of private sector participation required to secure the long-term financial future of protected areas, or the business methods and priorities of the private sector.

As a contribution to resolve this problem, the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas has implemented an initiative on Sustainable Financing.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Financing: Building a secure financial future at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND governments, national and international non government organizations, local and indigenous communities, businesses and civil society:

a. REMOVE the obstacles and enhance the opportunities for public-private –community partnerships in protected area management and funding to ensure sustained conservation of biodiversity, natural values and cultural heritage;
b. DEVELOP appropriate legal, administrative and financial instruments which implement new partnership arrangements for the benefit of both the protected area and its private sector partners;
c. ENSURE through adoption of appropriate legislation and other mechanisms a more effective, equitable and efficient distribution of the returns to the protected area from the emerging environmental services markets;
d. ENSURE that local and indigenous communities which provide services and contribute support to the protected area and its management are able to participate and engage in an equitable dialogue with the private sector and share in the financial benefits earned by the protected area and for project activities linked to protected areas;
e. FOSTER, ADOPT and PROMOTE business planning, marketing and related techniques appropriate to the management of protected areas;
f. CREATE business guidelines and standards for businesses that promote good governance and transparency and enhance the objectives of the protected areas; and
g. ENSURE that where specific private sector activities affect biodiversity, natural or cultural heritage adversely, the responsible parties should meet the costs of avoiding, minimizing, mitigating, restoring or compensating for their damages, including for support of protected areas;
2. CALL on the WCPA to consider means to:
a. ENHANCE financing opportunities for protected areas; and
b. PROMOTE a culture within all levels of protected area management which recognizes and respects local and indigenous community aspiration, culture and values.

Recommendation 09
Integrated Landscape Management to Support Protected Areas

While protected areas focus on biodiversity conservation, to be effective they must be managed in the context of the broader land/seascape. Conventions dealing with biodiversity have variously addressed this need, most notably through endorsement of the principles of the Ecosystem Approach (Decision V/6; Nairobi, 2000) by the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) and the adoption of Wise Use Guidance by the Contracting Parties to the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands.

Several other Multilateral Environmental Agreements, notably the Convention on Migratory Species, Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora, along with several regional agreements, recognize the importance of integrated approaches to land/seascape management in pursuit of their conservation objectives, including also the cultural landscapes inscribed on the World Heritage List and the World Network of Biosphere Reserves.

At the same time, protected area design and management must reflect the structure and condition of surrounding landscapes/seascapes, and in particular must be flexible enough to adapt to increasing unpredictability in rates and directions of global changes.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Steam on Integrated Landscape Management to Support Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (5-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND governments, non-government organizations, local communities and civil society to:

a. ADOPT and promote protected area design principles that reflect those inherent in the world network of biosphere reserves where core protected areas are part of landscapes designed to enhance the overall conservation value;
b. ADOPT design principles for protected areas which emphasize linkages to surrounding ecosystems and ensure that the surrounding landscapes are managed for biodiversity conservation;
c. RECOGNIZE the need to restore ecological processes in degraded areas both within protected areas and in their surrounding landscapes to ensure the ecological integrity of protected areas;
d. RECOGNIZE that the presence and needs of human populations consistent with biodiversity conservation within and in the vicinity of protected areas should be reflected in the overall design and management of protected areas and the surrounding landscapes;
e. RECOGNIZE the importance of participatory processes that link a diverse array of stakeholders in stewardship of the landscape linkages;
f. ENSURE that principles of adaptive management are applied to protected areas; and
g. ADOPT and promote a policy framework and incentives that encourage active involvement of local communities in biodiversity stewardship; and
2. CALL on UNESCO, IUCN and Secretariats of relevant multilateral environmental agreements, to work with Governments, civil society, the private sector, indigenous and local communities and NGOs to:
a. DEMONSTRATE how international law can contribute towards building site-specific, mutually beneficial relationships between biodiversity conservation, protected area management and sustainable development;
b. USE linking protected areas with the surrounding landscape as an opportunity to regenerate cultural landscapes including those shaped by traditional and mobile people, and to revitalize rural communities; and
c. ADOPT and promote the experience and lessons learned in integrated earthscape management of the UNESCO MAB World Network of Biosphere Reserves, the Ramsar Convention and other relevant international agreements in particular to move towards ‘benefits beyond boundaries’.

Recommendation 10
Policy Linkages between Relevant International Conventions and Programmes in Integrating Protected Areas in the Wider Landscape/Seascape

The Plan of Implementation of the WSSD calls for a significant reduction in the loss of biodiversity by the year 2010, and notes the need for protected areas and ecological networks to achieve this goal. 
Article 8 (a) of the Convention on Biological Diversity calls upon Parties to establish a system of protected areas as part of the suite of actions needed to conserve biodiversity and Article 8 (e) calls upon Parties to promote environmentally sound sustainable development in areas adjacent to these Protected Areas with the view to enhancing their protection of biodiversity. A number of global and regional conventions and programmes specifically address protected area issues.

At global level:

Each of these instruments includes processes to review the status of Protected Areas and to identify them as threatened or dysfunctional.
Likewise, the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals serves to protect migratory species, and while Protected Areas are not expressly noted in the Convention text, nonetheless Protected Areas are seen as being crucial to achieve its goals.

With these points in mind participants in the “Linkages in the landscape and seascape” Workshop Stream concluded that these instruments can be use to link protected areas with the wider land/seascape.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Linkages in the Landscape/Seascape at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):


1. Governments, local and indigenous communities, civil society and NGOs maintain and strengthen their involvement with the existing international instruments and pursue opportunities to harmonize their implementation in relation to PAs identification and management;

2. Governments, local and indigenous communities, civil society and NGOs ensure consistency of their contributions to the above mentioned international instruments with their contributions to implementing the plan of action of the WSSD, and in the framework of the Articles of the CBD in light of the conceptual integration offered by the Ecosystem Approach as adopted by the CoP to the CBD;

3. Governments, local and indigenous communities, civil society and NGOs working in Protected Areas, and surrounding areas promoting sustainable development as contemplated under the World Network of MAB Biosphere Reserves, designated under these international instruments, make full use of the linkages between them, and ensure that actions are also coordinated with activities in the surrounding land/seascape;

4. The governing bodies of relevant international conventions and programmes, as a means to achieve their conservation objectives, promote the establishment and maintenance of linkages in the Land/Seascape in their implementation plans or programmes;

5. The governing bodies of the MEAS/Programmes, as a means to achieve their conservation objectives, promote the establishment and maintenance of linkages in the land/seascape in their implementation plans/programmes; and

6. Recommend that sufficient financial resources be made available to governments, local communities, indigenous people, civil society, and NGOs who demonstrate need for participating in discussions pertaining to international conventions and other instruments.

Recommendation 11
A Global Network to Support the Development of Transboundary Conservation Initiatives

The exponential growth in transboundary conservation initiatives worldwide has resulted in more than 169 transboundary protected area complexes, which involve 666 protected areas in 113 countries. 
Transboundary conservation initiatives have the potential to conserve biodiversity and cultural resources at a landscape level, to foster peaceful cooperation among communities and societies across international boundaries, and to engender regional economic growth and integration.

The involvement and investment of many conservation and development agencies in transboundary conservation initiatives worldwide has been very important. Nevertheless, there remains a need for enhanced co-operation among agencies to support and develop transboundary conservation areas and to refine tools for their sustainable effective management.

A strategic global framework for transboundary conservation is lacking, along with an agreed approach towards monitoring and evaluating progress across biological, social, economic, political, legal, institutional and peace/co-operation objectives.

In order for protected area managers to conduct effective transboundary conservation programmes, there is need to harmonise approaches to management, involve communities in conservation and development programmes, develop and jointly apply best practice at the site level and share lessons learned.

The participants in the Governance and Linkages workshop streams, noting these points, highlighted that, despite considerable efforts over many years to provide guidance and support including the development of the World Commission on Protected Areas Best Practice Protected Area Guidelines Series No. 7 on Transboundary Protected Areas for Peace and Cooperation containing both Transboundary Protected Area Best Practice Guidelines and a Draft Code for transboundary protected areas in times of peace and armed conflict, the absence of an international forum to support and develop transboundary conservation initiatives in a coordinated and collaborative manner impedes progress.

They also noted the need for an international register/designation of transboundary conservation areas, which could formalise the status of these areas and ensure that appropriate standards are applied to their establishment and management.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Linkages in the Landscape/Seascape and in the Stream on Governance at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

RECOMMEND governments, non-government organizations, international organizations, development agencies, and specifically IUCN – The World Conservation Union, to:

1. SUPPORT the establishment of an international forum that will act as a global network for transboundary conservation initiatives where IUCN members, Parties to the CBD, protected area managers, and other audiences can collaborate, share lessons and continue the development of appropriate approaches and strategies;

2. DEVELOP and apply an agreed programme to develop tools and mechanisms for transboundary conservation initiatives, translating generic guidance into effective implementation for enhanced conservation at the site level, and especially to advance best practice for target-driven conservation management, for inclusive local governance and for implementing protocols for peaceful co-operation;

3. DEVELOP and apply an agreed programme of monitoring and evaluation for transboundary conservation of all types and across biological, social, economic, political, legal, including customary law, institutional and peace/co-operation indices; and

4. DEVELOP, with broad consultation, an international enabling framework and internationally recognised designation/register of transboundary conservation areas, and further recommend recognition of such sites through joint nominations to conventions such as Ramsar, World Heritage and the Man and the Biosphere (MAB) program.

Recommendation 12
Tourism as a Vehicle for Conservation and Support of Protected Areas

The world’s tourism and recreation sector potentially provides significant benefits to protected areas and associated communities. While tourism alone is not sufficient to support protected areas or community development, it can provide economic benefits, opportunities for communities, opportunities for land acquisition for protected areas, greater appreciation of cultural and natural heritage, greater knowledge of the interplay between humans and their environment, and increased interest in and commitment to the conservation of natural and cultural values. In this context, visitation, recreation and tourism are a critical component of fostering support for parks and the conservation of biological and cultural heritage. Careful and strategic implementation of policy together with proactive and effective management of tourism is essential.

However, the ecological, social and cultural costs of tourism can be considerable. Even limited impacts may have major conservation significance. If not planned developed and managed appropriately, tourism can contribute to the deterioration of cultural landscapes, threaten biodiversity, contribute to pollution and degradation of ecosystems, displace agricultural land and open spaces, diminish water and energy resources, disrupt social systems, and increase poverty.

Tourism in and around protected areas must be designed as a vehicle for conservation: building support; raising awareness of the many important values of protected areas including ecological, cultural, spiritual, aesthetic, recreational, and economic values, and generating much needed income for conservation work for the protection of biodiversity, ecosystem integrity and cultural heritage. Tourism should also contribute to the quality of life of indigenous and local communities provide incentives to support traditional customs and values, protect and respect sacred sites, and acknowledge traditional knowledge.

There are many stakeholders concerned with protected areas, and thus managers need resources and training to enable them to work effectively with different constituencies, including the tourism industry, local communities and visitors.

There are numerous conventions, charters and guidelines that can be of assistance, including, inter alia:

a. The Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) Guidelines on Tourism in Vulnerable Ecosystems;
b. The ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Charter: Managing Tourism at Places of Heritage Significance;
c. The Quebec Declaration on Ecotourism;
d. The IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas’ (WCPA) publication Sustainable Tourism in Protected Areas: Guidelines for Planning and Management;
e. The Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage;
f. The World Tourism Organisation Global Code of Ethics for Tourism.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that the tourism sector, including appropriate institutions, associations, and operators, work together with protected area managers and communities to ensure that tourism associated with protected areas, in both developed and developing countries:

a. Respects the primacy of the role of conservation for protected areas;
b. Makes tangible and equitable financial contributions to conservation and to protected area management;
c. Ensures tourism contributes to local economic development and poverty reduction through:
i. Support to local small and medium sized enterprises;
ii. Employment of local people;
iii. Purchasing of local goods and services; and
iv. Fair and equitable partnerships with local communities;
d. Uses relevant approaches that encourage appropriate behaviour by visitors (e.g., environmental education, interpretation, and marketing);
e. Uses ecologically and culturally appropriate technologies, infrastructure, facilities and materials in and or near protected areas;
f. Monitors, reports and mitigates negative impacts and enhances positive effects of tourism;
g. Communicates the benefits of protected areas and the imperative for conservation; and
h. Promotes the use of guidelines, codes of practice and certification programmes;

2. RECOMMEND that key decision-makers work with the conservation community, including the IUCN WCPA Task Force for Tourism and Protected Areas, to ensure that tourism:

a. Supports the sustainable use of natural and cultural heritage;
b. Supports local and indigenous community development and economic opportunities;
i. Provides political and financial support for the establishment, extension, and effective management of protected areas;
ii. Supports implementation of relevant international agreements, national legislation, and guidelines on protected areas;
iii. Fosters respect and stewardship for natural and cultural heritage through visitation and education: and
iv. Promotes the use of culturally appropriately participatory processes;

3. THEREFORE RECOMMEND to key international and national agencies, local authorities and the private sector to support research and development to:

a. Understand the links between tourism, conservation and community development;
b. Establish reliable data on protected area tourism;
c. Determine optimum types and levels of protected area visitation;
d. Promote appropriate monitoring and evaluation;
e. Promote effective management;
f. Encourage policy development on protected area tourism;
g. Provide appropriate tourism training for protected area personnel;
h. Provide effective interpretation and education;
i. Understand visitor experiences, behaviour and impact; and
j. Develop appropriate tools and techniques for sustainable finance of protected areas through tourism;
4. ENCOURAGE dissemination of these recommendations and coordination of their implementation by the IUCN WCPA Task Force for Tourism and Protected Areas.

Recommendation 13
Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas

The establishment of protected areas is the result of conscious choices of human societies to conserve nature, biodiversity and areas of special cultural value and significance. Individuals and communities often use protected areas for spiritual reasons, because they inspire and heal them and/or provide them with a place for peace, education and communion with the natural world. Many transboundary protected areas have already been promoted and managed as areas for peace and cooperation, thus adding a tangible and valuable dimension of peace-building among peoples, nations and communities.

Protected areas serve as fundamental tools for conservation of nature, and thus are an expression of the highest desires and commitments of humankind for the preservation of life on the planet, and that as such, those areas constitute places of deep reverence and ethical realization.

Many societies, especially indigenous and traditional peoples, recognise sacred places and engage in traditional practices for the protection of geographical areas, nature, ecosystems, or species, as an expression of societal or cultural choice and of their worldview of the sacredness of nature and its inextricable links with culture. They also recognise sacred places as a unique source of knowledge and understanding of their own culture thus providing what could be considered the equivalent of a university.

Sacred places are revered and cared for by indigenous and traditional peoples and are a fundamental part of their territories, bringing significant benefits to local, national, and global communities. In some cases, they are seeking to have them recognised as part of existing protected areas systems.

With these points in mind participants in the Session entitled “Building Cultural Support for Protected Areas” held in the Building Broader Support Workshop Stream, recommended that all protected area systems, recognise and incorporate spiritual values of protected areas and culture-based approaches to conservation.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. ACKNOWLEDGE indigenous peoples’ internationally guaranteed rights to, among others, own and control their sacred places, their archaeological and cultural heritage, ceremonial objects and human remains contained in museums or collections within or adjacent to protected areas. These include the following rights to:

a. DEFINE and name their sacred places and objects, ancestral remains and archaeological, cultural and intellectual heritage and to have such designations respected as authoritative;
b. Where relevant, MAINTAIN secrecy about and enjoy privacy in relation to their heritage, objects, remains and places as described above;
c. RESTITUTION of sacred places, heritage, objects and remains taken without their free and informed consent;
d. FREELY EXERCISE their ceremonies, religious and spiritual practices in the manner to which they are accustomed;
e. GATHER, collect or harvest flora, fauna and other natural resources used in ceremonies and practices that take place at sacred places or archaeological and cultural heritage places; and
f. MAINTAIN their responsibilities to their ancestors and future generations;
2. THEREFORE RECOMMEND that international institutions, governments, protected area authorities, NGOs, churches, user and interest groups fully recognise and respect the above-mentioned rights in relation to conservation activities;

3. RECOMMEND governments to:

a. PROMOTE and adopt laws and policies that foster multi-cultural values and approaches to protected area systems;
b. PROMOTE and adopt laws and policies that acknowledge the importance of sacred places, particularly those of indigenous and traditional peoples, as valuable for biodiversity conservation and ecosystem management;
c. ADOPT and enforce laws and policies with the full and effective participation and consent of peoples and communities concerned, which protect the integrity of sacred places;
d. ADOPT and enforce laws and policies that guarantee the restitution of sacred places as well as effective control and decision-making processes by local communities and indigenous peoples;
e. PROMOTE and adopt laws and policies, which recognise the effectiveness of innovative governance models such as Community Conserved Areas of indigenous peoples and local communities to ensure control and adequate protection over sacred areas;
f. PROMOTE and implement effective action to support community protection efforts in areas of cultural and spiritual importance including sacred places; and
g. ADOPT and enforce policies and legal measures, which respect customary use and management of sacred places and ensure access for traditional practitioners in protected areas;
4. FURTHER RECOMMEND governments, NGOs, local communities and civil society to:
a. ENSURE that protected area systems, protected area designation, objective setting, management planning, zoning and training of managers, especially at the local level, give balanced attention to the full spectrum of material, cultural and spiritual values;
b. ASSIST indigenous and traditional peoples in obtaining legal and technical support related to protection of their sacred places when requested and in a manner that respects their rights and interests; and
c. DEVELOP and implement public education and media campaigns to raise awareness and respect for cultural and spiritual values and, in particular, sacred places;
5. REQUEST protected area managers to:
a. IDENTIFY and recognize sacred places within their protected areas, with the participation and informed consent of those who revere such places, and to actively involve them in decisions regarding management and protection of their sacred places;
b. PROMOTE inter-cultural dialogue and conflict resolution with indigenous peoples, local communities and other actors interested in conservation;
c. SUPPORT the efforts of such communities to maintain their cultural and spiritual values and practices related to protected areas; and
d. PROMOTE the use of indigenous languages in these matters;
6. RECOGNIZING the importance of cultural and spiritual values in all protected area categories, request the IUCN to review the 1994 Protected Area Category Guidelines with the aim of including these values as additional potential management objectives in categories where they are currently excluded; and

7. REQUEST the World Commission on Protected Areas of IUCN and its members to plan and implement actions within the protected areas component of the IUCN Programme for supporting the application of the actions recommended above.

Recommendation 14
Cities and Protected Areas

Half the world’s population now lives in cities, and this proportion is expected to grow to 60 percent by 2030. Protected areas both near and far provide many significant benefits to cities, ranging from education and healthy recreation, to watershed protection, biodiversity conservation, and income from tourism. Protected area systems also depend on support from voters, leaders, opinion-shapers, and financial resources, which are largely concentrated in cities. At the same time, city dwellers tend to be less and less connected to nature and consequently the quality of their lives is diminished and they may unwittingly behave irresponsibly toward the environment.

Nevertheless, urban residents can gain greater appreciation and love for nature through experiences in natural areas and open spaces as well as through education. Ecological restoration and environmental protection are essential to the quality of life of urban dwellers. Interaction with nature by city dwellers brings direct social, economic, and cultural benefits.

Agencies responsible for protected areas can serve urban residents through conventional activities such as preserving, restoring, and interpreting natural areas in and near cities, but also through less conventional roles such as reaching out to disadvantaged people, working to bridge social divisions through shared experiences in nature, and helping to “green” and promote sustainable development in cities.

IUCN has recognised the critical roles that cities, urban people, and urban institutions play in achieving IUCN’s overall mission, for example, in Caring for the Earth (1991) and at the Union’s 50th Anniversary Celebration (Fontainebleau, 1998). Urban populations are also essential to achieving such fundamental goals of the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) as “Strengthening the constituency for protected areas” (Recommendation 1 of the IVth World Parks Congress; Caracas, 1992). Connecting protected areas to social and economic concerns is a priority of WCPA’s 2001-2004 action plan.

At the same time, more should be done to facilitate exchange of experience in urban conservation and outreach among the increasing number of IUCN members with such activities, and many innovative local socio-environmental programmes, including programmes involving children and young people in making the case for conservation.

Finally, allied intergovernmental programmes such as the UNESCO Man and the Biosphere Programme and national programmes that connect natural and cultural heritage sites are placing greater emphasis on urban dimensions of protecting biodiversity.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that conservation agencies, NGOs, local authorities and local communities:

a. RECOGNISE the importance of protected areas and green spaces to the people living in cities and encourage and resource the development of strategies and programs that engage groups in activities that improve their quality of life;
b. RECOGNISE the interdependence of cities and protected areas, as demonstrated for example through regional and ecosystem approaches linking urban and rural conservation areas and efforts, and the important contributions of protected areas to socio-economic priorities; and
c. STRENGTHEN the capacity of the protected area community to preserve and restore natural areas in and near cities, reach out to urban residents, and build stronger urban constituencies for nature conservation;
2. RECOMMEND that the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas incorporate an urban dimension in its activities through a Theme on Cities and Protected Areas; and


a. ORGANISE activities at the 3rd World Conservation Congress (Bangkok, 2004) spotlighting innovative programmes linking cities and protected areas;
b. INCORPORATE the urban dimensions of conservation into the 2005-08 intersessional programme to be considered at the 3rd World Conservation Congress (Bangkok, 2004);
c. LINK biodiversity conservation to human settlements in order to better advance the implementation of sustainable development objectives, including the United Nations Millennium Development Goals;
d. RECRUIT as members organizations engaged in urban environmental issues, invites prominent leaders and experts in urban management to participate in the work of IUCN;
e. DEVELOP partnerships with key organisations engaged in the urban environment; and
f. DEVELOP tools, such as modelling techniques, which assist urban managers to incorporate ecosystem management approaches in their planning and management.

Recommendation 15
Peace, Conflict and Protected Areas

A just peace is a fundamental precondition for the conservation of biodiversity and other natural and associated cultural resources, and one to which all sectors of society should contribute. Protected areas benefit from peaceful conditions both within and between countries, and can contribute to peace when they are effectively managed. Protected areas can also contribute to fostering peaceful cooperation across borders, which led to the preparation of Transboundary Protected Areas for Peace and Co-operation in the WCPA Best Practice Protected Area Guidelines Series.

Many protected areas are however located in politically and socio-economically sensitive regions where the risk of conflict has been historically high, or within countries facing significant insecurity. Protected Areas can be both a focus and source of finance for conflict, and suffer from it. The outbreak of armed conflict can halt and reverse conservation and management efforts and destroy natural resources, lives and livelihoods. Poverty is linked to the cycle of conflict and poor governance.

It is therefore urgent that relevant actors understand, evaluate and address the challenges of establishing and managing protected areas in conflict-prone situations, drawing on international mechanisms such as the World Heritage in Danger listing to apply political pressure and mobilize financial support.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that governments, non-government organizations, local communities and civil society:

a. RECOGNIZE that the establishment and management of a protected area can influence and be influenced by peace and conflict dynamics;
b. DEVELOP the capacity for international rapid response to provide training, mediation and support for field based protected areas staff in times of crisis including armed conflict;
c. ENSURE any humanitarian relief efforts minimize negative effects on protected areas;
d. REVIEW, DEVELOP AND ADAPT design and management tools, such as Social Impact Assessment, Peace and Conflict Impact Assessment (PCIA), ecological, and law enforcement monitoring (LEM), to systematically monitor and evaluate the impacts of peace and conflict dynamics on protected areas, and the impacts of protected areas on those dynamics, using the results to inform practice;
e. INVESTIGATE AND IMPLEMENT international and national instruments to strengthen protection of World Heritage Sites and other protected areas in times of armed conflict and post-conflict reconstruction (Draft Convention on the Prohibition of Hostile Military Activities in Protected Areas), and enhance accountability by all parties for their impacts on protected areas and people, including field based staff;
f. ENSURE that post-conflict social and economic development takes into account the importance of protected area integrity and conservation;
g. ENSURE that any parties supporting protected areas in the field in conflict situations are recognized as neutral in that capacity;
h. ENABLE a management presence to be maintained in protected areas in times of armed conflict through contingency planning and other means;
i. ENSURE that protected areas field staff are adequately trained, equipped and continually supported to maintain conservation effectiveness, morale and safety;
j. CALL on donors and other supporters to remain and provide continued funding and assistance to protected areas in situations of conflict;
k. PROMOTE continued involvement of local communities in conservation through their engagement in protected areas management, capacity building, education, incentives and benefit sharing, and provision of alternatives to exploitation of protected areas in times of crisis;
l. SUPPORT prompt coordinated action to rehabilitate affected protected areas after conflict has ended;
m. INCORPORATE protected area conservation in military and peacekeeping training programmes and operations;
n. URGE countries in situations of real or potential conflict with other countries to explore protected areas cooperation as a basis for peace building;
o. ESTABLISH a fund to assist families of protected areas staff killed or injured in the line of duty;
p. ADDRESS root causes of violent conflict by promoting respect for human rights, improved governance, the elimination of corruption, poverty alleviation (see WPC recommendation 5.29) and certification of sustainably produced commodities (e.g. Forest Stewardship Council); and
q. INCORPORATE these recommendations into existing IUCN and World Heritage guidelines and best practice, including the Draft Code for Transboundary Protected Areas in Times of Peace and Armed Conflict.
2. RECOMMEND, with a view to mobilizing action by key parties, that IUCN's Commission on Environmental Law, its Commission on Environmental Economic and Social Policy, World Commission on Protected Areas and other appropriate parties establish a Task Force to:
a. IDENTIFY AND REPORT ON the forms of international instruments available to enable the capacity for international response (as per clause 1.b.) to provide a neutral status to protected areas personnel and to enhance accountability for impacts on protected areas and people including field based staff in situations of armed conflict;
b. COMPILE guidelines and good practice examples of protected areas management in times of armed conflict and in post-conflict reconstruction; and
c. MONITOR and report on implementation of this recommendation at regular intervals

Recommendation 16
Good Governance of Protected Areas

Governance involves the interactions among structures, processes traditions and knowledge systems that determine how power and responsibility are exercised, how decisions are taken, and how citizens and other stakeholders have their say. It is a concept that applies at all levels in the field of protected areas – site, national, regional and global. The degree to which protected areas meet conservation objectives, contribute to the well-being of society and achieve broad social, economic and environmental goals is closely related to the quality of their governance. Thus, protected areas are relevant, benefit society-at-large, and are a legacy to future generations.

‘Good governance’ was identified by the World Summit on Sustainable Development Plan of Implementation as being “essential for sustainable development” and States committed themselves to:

As an example, the New Partnership for Africa’s Development (NEPAD), which is designed to eradicate poverty and achieve sustainable growth, acknowledges that development is impossible in the absence of true democracy, respect for human rights, peace, and ‘good governance’.

Further, the United Nations Secretary General has stated that ‘good governance’ is perhaps the single most important factor in eradicating poverty and promoting development”.

Practically, protected areas should be managed in keeping with the Ecosystem Approach as defined by the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity (Decision V/6) which can be summarised as a strategy for the integrated management of land, water and living resources that promotes conservation and sustainable use in an equitable way. Also, the IUCN /WWF Principles of Indigenous/Traditional Peoples and Protected Areas includes a principle that decentralization, participation, transparency and accountability should be taken into account in all matters pertaining to the mutual interests of protected areas and indigenous and other traditional peoples. And, the UNDP has published a list of characteristics of ‘good governance’ and there is growing recognition of the key elements that constitute ‘good governance’.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Governance: New ways of working together at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

RECOMMEND governments and civil society:

1. ENDORSE the importance of governance as a key concept for protected areas and PROMOTE ‘good governance’ as essential for the effective management of protected areas of all types in the 21st Century;

2. RECOGNISE that governance of protected areas should reflect and address relevant social, ecological, cultural, historical and economic factors, and what constitutes ‘good governance’ in any area needs to be considered in light of local circumstances, traditions and knowledge systems;

3. ADOPT “Legitimacy and Voice”, “Accountability”, “Performance”, “Fairness”, and “Direction” as general principles of ‘good governance’ for protected areas in the 21st Century and use them as a basis for developing their own principles to improve protected area management;

4. URGE all those involved in the establishment and management of protected areas to strive to pursue the above principles for ‘good governance’ including attention to:

a. recognition of the diverse knowledge systems;
b. openness, transparency, and accountability in decision making;
c. inclusive leadership;
d. mobilizing support from diverse interests, with special emphasis on partners and local and indigenous communities; and
e. sharing authority and resources and devolving/decentralizing decision making authority and resources where appropriate;
5. RECOGNISE that ‘good governance’ contributes to the achievement of the objectives of protected areas and to social acceptance and sustainability of conservation in the long term;

6. ENCOURAGE and IMPROVE the capacity of managers of protected areas to apply the above principles of good governance in implementing the ecosystem approach advocated by the Convention on Biological Diversity and dealing with global change; and

7. CALL on the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to address the matter of good governance in the programme of work for protected areas, in particular with regard to capacity building needs and exchanges of experiences and lessons learned.

Recommendation 17
Recognising and Supporting a Diversity of Governance Types for Protected Areas

Conservation and sustainable management of areas for biodiversity, ecosystem services and cultural values are dependent on the actions of society as a whole. Many protected areas are declared and managed by governments. However there is a diversity of additional governance types delivering conservation and addressing other objectives throughout the world, including:

  1. Decentralised governance by state/provincial or local/municipal government units;
  2. Co–managed arrangements with local communities and other stakeholders;
  3. Indigenous or traditional territories governed or managed for livelihood, cultural and conservation purposes by indigenous or traditional communities;
  4. Protected areas managed by private sector entities under long term contract or outright private ownership; and
  5. Transboundary conservation areas.
"Governance types" in this recommendation refers to who holds management authority and responsibility and is expected to be held accountable. This authority may be derived from legal, customary or otherwise legitimate rights.

The world is experiencing rapid and profound social, technological, cultural, demographic and environmental changes and governance arrangements that were appropriate in the last century may no longer be appropriate or sustainable in the face of the trends and challenges that countries and civil society will have to contend with in this century. There is also a worldwide trend towards decentralising authority and responsibility for the management of protected areas, including increasing efforts to develop partnerships among different sectors of society and to provide for greater engagement of civil society in decision making related to protected areas.

The Ecosystem Approach endorsed as a basic framework by the Convention on Biological Diversity (Decision V/6) supports a diversity of governance types since it recognises the centrality of social, cultural, economic and institutional factors in promoting conservation, and calls for decentralising management to the lowest appropriate level and stakeholder involvement in conservation.

Recognition of different types of governance is important to help fulfil the requirements of national protected area systems as called for under Article 8a of the Convention on Biological Diversity and in particular to ensure the bio-physical connectivity essential to conserve biological diversity. Thus, protected area systems combining different governance types are likely to be more resilient, responsive and adaptive under various threats to conservation, and thus more sustainable and effective in the long run.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Governance: New ways of working together at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND governments and civil society:

a. Recognise the legitimacy and importance of a range of governance types for protected areas as a means to strengthen the management and expand the coverage of the world’s protected areas, to address gaps in national protected area systems, to promote connectivity at landscape and seascape level, to enhance public support for such areas, and to strengthen the relationship between people and the land, freshwater and the sea; and
b. Promote relationships of mutual respect, communication, and support between and amongst people managing and supporting protected areas under all different governance types;
2. REQUEST the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA) to refine its Protected Area Categorization System to include a governance dimension that recognises the legitimacy and diversity of approaches to protected area establishment and management and makes explicit that a variety of governance types can be used to achieve conservation objectives and other goals;

3. RECOMMEND that this "governance dimension" recognise at least four broad governance types applicable to all IUCN protected area categories:

a. Government managed;
b. Co-managed (i.e. multi-stakeholder management);
c. Privately managed; and
d. Community managed (community conserved areas);
4. URGE the Chairs of IUCN’s Commissions to establish an inter-Commission working group on protected area governance with membership especially from the WCPA, the Commission on Environmental, Economic and Social Policy (CEESP) and the Commission on Environmental Law (CEL), to advance a comprehensive programme of work, including:
a. Research that supports, improves and evaluates the management effectiveness and the good governance attributes of all protected area governance types (especially including participatory research approaches);
b. Analysis of the type and extent of support required in terms of legislation, policies and practices to improve protected area governance;
c. Compilation, analysis and sharing of relevant experiences and best practices; and
d. Capacity building initiatives;
5. ENCOURAGE the UNEP/World Conservation Monitoring Centre to expand its data collection and dissemination programme to recognise all governance types, particularly areas of conservation value established and managed outside government protected area networks, such as community conserved areas and private protected areas;

6. CALL on the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to:

a. RECOGNISE the legitimacy of all these governance types;
b. ADOPT legal and policy measures to reinforce the management effectiveness and good governance attributes of these governance types; and
c. UNDERTAKE initiatives to strengthen relevant institutional and human capacities, particularly mutual learning among protected area institutions and sites engaged in similar efforts.

Recommendation 18
Management Effectiveness Evaluation to Support Protected Area Management

Effective management is needed to ensure that the values of protected areas are maintained or restored now and in the future. Evaluation of management effectiveness is a vital component of adaptive and cooperative protected area management, where managers and stake-holders work together and learn from experience. Environmental, socioeconomic and institutional monitoring and auditing in protected areas is an essential part of protected area management. It can provide useful information for assessing and tracking change in both protected areas and the wider environment, and can provide information to serve as an early warning system for environmental challenges, to recognize and replicate conservation success, and to enable effective responses to this change.

Evaluation of management effectiveness can increase the transparency and accountability of protected area management, thus assisting in cooperative management and enhancing community support. It can also provide a more logical and transparent basis for planning and for allocating resources.

At the same time there is increasing interest by governments, management agencies, NGOs and others to develop and apply systems to evaluate the effectiveness of management of protected areas.

There is also an increasing number of international institutions, governments, donors, non-governmental organisations and members of civil society that are asking for more rigorous guarantees of effective management; however there has been little enthusiasm for any overall “certification” scheme for protected areas.

In this regard, recommendation 17 (Protected area categories, management effectiveness, and threats), paragraphs c, d, and e, which was adopted at the IVth World Parks Congress (Caracas, 1992), inter alia, called for IUCN to develop a system for monitoring management effectiveness of protected areas and for managers and others to apply such a system and report on the findings of monitoring. In response, IUCN has prepared the publication Evaluating Effectiveness: A framework for assessing management of protected areas (IUCN, 2000), which provides a framework and principles for evaluation of management effectiveness.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Management effectiveness: Maintaining Protected Areas for now and the future at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Af-rica (8-17 September 2003):

1. AFFIRM the importance of monitoring and evaluation of management effectiveness as a basis for improved protected area management and more transparent and accountable reporting;

2. CALL on states and protected area managers (including government, private sector, NGOs, indigenous and local community managers) to adopt, as a routine component of protected area management, systems for evaluating management effectiveness that accord with the principles set out in the IUCN World Comission on Protected Areas (WCPA) Best Practice Series publication No. 6 Evaluating Effectiveness: A framework for assessing management of protected areas;

3. RECOMMEND that IUCN’s members, in considering the IUCN Quadrennial Programme Framework for 2005-2008, ensure that it fosters cooperation with relevant partners for the purpose of undertaking a work programme on management effectiveness evaluation, which would include:

a. Mechanisms to facilitate research and development on appropriate indicators, standards and methodologies for assessing aspects of protected area management (e.g. biodiversity conservation, ecological integrity, social, economic and governance aspects). This research should incorporate experience of protected area managers and take account of differences in various environments and parts of the world;
b. Development of an overall minimum standards system for protected area management effectiveness globally. This system should allow for differences in capacity, conditions for measurement, and methodologies across the globe, yet provide a consistent overall metric of management effectiveness that can complement measures of protected area coverage and distribution across nations and across biomes around the world;
c. Development of a database of management effectiveness assessment initiatives and experts in management effectiveness assessment, This information should be made available to State Parties, protected area managers, relevant NGOs and other protected area institutions;
d. Analysis of the results of management effectiveness evaluations to identify common regional or global trends and dissemination of findings to states/management agencies;
e. Preparation of advice and best practice guidelines to states and protected area agencies on the most effective means of addressing significant and widespread threats to protected areas such as alien invasive species, unsustainable resource harvesting and climate change;
f. Development and promotion by IUCN of minimum standards for evaluation systems and practices for assessing management effectiveness; and
g. Inclusion of management effectiveness tracking in global databases of protected areas;

4. RECOMMEND that WCPA, on request and subject to availability of relevant experts and necessary resources, provides guidance in selection of evaluation systems and/or undertakes review of evaluation systems for protected area agencies;

5. ENCOURAGE states, protected area managers and NGOs to report on the outcomes of management effectiveness evaluations in an open and transparent way. Such reporting will help to build an informed (and hence more supportive) community and will assist in regional, national and global priority setting;

6. RECOMMEND that WCPA provide guidance on the similarities and differences between management effectiveness evaluation and State of Environment and State of Protected Area Reporting in order to enhance application of these tools in the appropriate circumstances;

7. CALL on states, protected area managers, funding bodies and NGOs to use strategies for meaningful community involvement in management effectiveness evaluation, and to include analysis of the impact of protected areas on local and indigenous communities, and the effectiveness of their involvement in management as part of the evaluation;

8. RECOMMEND that funding bodies promote the use of transparent, appropriate and credible management effectiveness evaluation in protected areas or systems where support is being provided and provide financial and other necessary support for implementation of such systems;

9. ENCOURAGE and support the establishment and strengthening of international efforts to undertake global assessments and tracking of threats to protected areas as a basis for more informed national and international policy and action;

10. RECOMMEND that the WCPA task force on certification of protected areas investigates and makes recommendations on the suitability of and options for developing a process to move forward toward a proactive monitoring, auditing and evaluation including:

a. Development of guidelines for minimum standards for each IUCN protected area category – with encouragement for individual countries and/or regions to adapt these to their own situations;
b. Development of certification or verification schemes relating to management effectiveness for protected areas to give guarantees that these are meeting minimum standards to be included in national protected area networks; and
c. Explores a certification scheme for management effectiveness for the CBD;
11. RECOMMEND that The World Heritage Centre and WCPA management effectiveness theme develop a process to strengthen the reactive monitoring scheme and to investigate options for a more formal certification scheme for Natural WH Sites;

12. RECOMMEND that WCPA works with partners to investigate options for outlining benefits and costs of certification and encourages protected area effectiveness assessment methods and certification schemes to include wider benefits from protected areas such as environmental services;

13. RECOMMEND to the parties of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) include policies and actions relating to evaluation of management effectiveness when they develop policies and a work program on protected areas. These policies and work programs could encourage Parties to the CBD to:

a. ADOPT and INSTITUTIONALIZE periodic system wide protected area management effectiveness assessments by 2005, where:
i. The results of such assessments should be integrated into the reporting requirements of the Parties reporting to the Conference of the Parties; and
ii. The reports should be based on the credible assessment systems;
b. PROMOTE the adoption and implementation of best practice systems for assessing management effectiveness of protected areas at the local, national and regional level and support this through appropriate capacity building activities;
c. ENCOURAGE State Parties, protected area managers and relevant NGOs and protected area institutions to methodically and transparently use the outcomes of management effectiveness evaluation and state of parks reporting to improve management of protected areas at local, regional and state/ national level; and
d. CO-OPERATE with IUCN and WCPA in research, development and promotion of best practice systems and indicators and standards for evaluating management ef-fectiveness of protected areas; and
14. RECOMMEND that the Secretariats of relevant Conventions such as the World Heritage Convention and the UNEP Regional Seas Conventions, adopt a consistent and compatible reporting framework that includes the results of management effectiveness evaluation.

Recommendation 19
IUCN Protected Area Management Categories

Recommendation 17 of the 4th WPC held in Caracas, Venezuela, February 1992 calls for a system of six categories of protected areas based upon management objectives. Resolution number 19.4 of the IUCN General Assembly in Buenos Aires (January 1994) endorses the system developed at Caracas and urges all governments to consider the relevance of the categories system to national legislation.

Publication of the Guidelines for Protected Area Management Categories by IUCN in 1994 provides advice on the new system agreed to at Buenos Aires. Also, the results of the research work (Speaking a Common Language) undertaken in preparation for the 5th World Parks Congress on the impact of the 1994 categories system, provide insights.

Finally, the new ways in which the category system is now being used - none of which was clearly envisaged in 1994 – serve to raise the importance of the system, for example:

  1. In determining appropriate activities in protected areas (e.g., in respect of mining and protected areas);
  2. In establishing relevant criteria to assess management effectiveness;
  3. In advocacy in relation to protected areas;
  4. As the basis for national protected area legislation and policy, and international agreements; and
  5. As a tool in bioregional planning.
Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Management Effectiveness: Maintaining protected areas for now and the future at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. DECLARE that the purpose of the IUCN protected area management categories system is to provide an internationally-recognized conceptual and practical framework for planning, management and monitoring of protected areas;

2. REAFFIRM that in the application of the management categories IUCN’s definition of a protected area (“an area of land and/or sea especially dedicated to the protection and maintenance of biological diversity and of natural and associated cultural resources and managed through legal or other effective means”) must always be met as the overarching criterion;

3. REAFFIRM the value to conservation of the 1994 system of protected area management categories, and in particular that the six category, objectives-based approach should remain the essential foundation for the system;

4. REAFFIRM that the integrity of the protected area categories system is the responsibility of IUCN, and that it should reinforce its efforts, through its membership as well as through WCPA and other commissions, to promote the understanding of the full range of IUCN categories at national and international levels;

5. ADVISE, however, that the new uses of the system require that IUCN, working in collaboration with partner organisations, urgently produce, through an open, participatory process, a revised, up-dated edition of the 1994 guidelines, which:

a. Builds on the existing objectives set out for each category, including by improved summary definitions of the categories;
b. Includes a set of criteria and principles which should underpin the categories system and its application;
c. Explains how the categories relate to ecological networks and wider regional planning;
d. Considers removing generic names of protected areas from the category system, as these may have different meanings in different countries, and using only management objectives and numbers for each category;
e. Redesigns the “matrix of management objectives and IUCN protected area management categories” in the 1994 edition, so as to relate better to current experience in protected areas;
f. Gives more emphasis to marine and freshwater protected areas;
g. Gives more consideration to the linkage between protected areas and sustainable livelihoods;
h. Gives greater recognition of cultural and spiritual values, so that the full range of special qualities of each protected area are fully recognized;
i. Provides guidance on the inclusion, within the system, of private protected areas, and of those managed by local and indigenous communities;
j. Enables protected areas to have more than one category when zones within them have been legally defined for different management objectives;
k. Suggests how protected areas, which are assigned to their category by primary management objectives, can also be described by reference to the organisation responsible for their governance, the effectiveness of their management and the degree to which they retain their naturalness;
l. Clarifies the recommended process by which categories are assigned to protected areas; and
m. Makes these revised guidelines available in IUCN’s official languages and also in other languages as permitted by available resources;
6. ADVISE further that IUCN, in collaboration with partner organisations, urgently invest in awareness raising and capacity building about the use of the categories system, based upon the foregoing and working with partners such as UNEP/World Conservation Monitoring Centre, through training, case studies and additional published guidance (linked to the updated 1994 guidelines);

7. RECOMMEND that in such awareness raising and capacity building, priority should be given to:

a. Advocating an open, inclusive and transparent procedure for assignment of protected areas to categories for application at the national level, including an IUCN review procedure in relation to reporting;
b. Providing supplementary guidance on Category VI protected areas;
c. Providing supplementary guidance on the application of the categories in the marine and freshwater environments; and
d. Promoting the use of the categories for protected areas in forest, marine and freshwater environments;
8. URGE IUCN to develop a monitoring and research programme around the use of the categories, including the legal implications of using categories in legislation, and the implications of the categories system for indigenous and community rights;

9. CONSIDER that the foregoing would be aided by the creation of a task force on the protected area management categories within the WCPA Management Effectiveness theme;

10. URGE IUCN to work with parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity, in preparation for, and during the CBD/COP7, so as to secure:

a. Inter-governmental recognition of the IUCN protected area management categories system as the international method for categorizing protected areas; and
b. Agreement to use the system as a basis for national data collection and reporting to the CBD Secretariat on protected areas;
11. Further URGE IUCN to work with the parties and Scientific and Technical Review Panel of the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands to promote application of the categories to the global network of Wetlands of International Importance;

12. CALL on all governments to recognise the importance of the decisions that they take on category assignment, made at the request of IUCN and UNEP/WCMC, and to undertake this exercise in a timely manner through open, inclusive, and transparent procedures;

13. RECOMMEND that UNEP/WCMC reviews the format used in the UN List of protected areas to depict clearly all protected area categories and associated information; and

14. RECOMMEND that IUCN’s Inter-sessional Programme Framework for 2005-2008 accommodate a programme of work to further develop and promote the IUCN protected area categories system, which will be considered by IUCN’s members at the 3rd World Conservation Congress (November 2004).

Recommendation 20
Preventing and Mitigating Human-Wildlife Conflicts

Human-wildlife conflict occurs when the needs and behaviour of wildlife impact negatively on the goals of humans or when the goals of humans negatively impact the needs of wildlife. These conflicts may result when wildlife damage crops, injure or kill domestic animals, threaten or kill people. As human activities continue to intensify in and around protected areas and wildlife threatens the economic security, livelihoods and even lives of people, human-wildlife conflict escalates. Consequently, if protected areas and other pertinent authorities fail to address such conflicts adequately, local support for conservation declines.

While some remedial measures and tools exist to assist stakeholders to prevent or mitigate this conflict, most of this information is strongly site and species /genera specific, and is not widely or easily accessed by protected area managers who most closely confront HWC. In addition, the lessons learned in these specific sites and within taxonomic groups often have applicability across a wider spectrum. However, there is no existing international forum to address HWC across taxonomic groups, disciplines and geographic regions with a mandate to develop and share lessons, tools and strategies to prevent and mitigate the ecological, social and economic costs of human-wildlife conflict.

By better addressing human-wildlife conflict issues, through coordinated global, national, regional and local action, we, as a conservation community, will be able to more successfully conserve protected areas and wildlife, mitigate the economic and social costs to local communities, and thus realize the “benefits beyond boundaries.”

IUCN has recognized the importance of this issue in the support given to the realization of the workshop “Creating Coexistence between Humans and Wildlife: Global Perspectives on Local Efforts to Address Human-Wildlife Conflict”, with linkages in the Landscapes/Seascapes Stream & Community and Equity Cross-cutting theme.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Steam on Linkages in the Landscape/Seascape at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

RECOMMEND that local, national, and international conservation organizations, governments, non-governmental organizations, interest groups and specifically IUCN, to:

1. SUPPORT the establishment of an international forum that will act as a global network for addressing human-wildlife conflict issues where IUCN members, CBD parties, protected area managers, communities and other stakeholders can collaborate to share lessons, resources and expertise and continue the development of appropriate approaches and strategies, by working across taxa, disciplines and geographic regions;

2. STRENGTHEN the capacity of protected area managers, communities, stakeholders and others to better prevent and mitigate human-wildlife conflict in all regions in which it occurs;

3. ENSURE national and international cooperation in developing and supporting programs to address human-wildlife conflict among institutions responsible for conservation in conflict areas;

4. ENCOURAGE governments and conservation authorities at the local, national, and international levels to recognize the pressing need to alleviate these conflicts, prioritise management decisions, planning and action to prevent and mitigate human-wildlife conflict, and incorporate global, regional and local mechanisms to ensure proper addressing of these issues; and

5. ENCOURAGE national and international funding organizations to designate and allocate adequate financial resources to support programmes targeted at preventing and mitigating human-wildlife conflicts.

Recommendation 21
The World Heritage Convention

The UNESCO World Heritage Convention is an important instrument of international co-operation to protect and transmit to future generations the world’s outstanding natural and/or cultural heritage. The global coverage of World Heritage extends across 129 countries with a total of 754 sites on the World Heritage List (582 cultural, 149 natural and 23 mixed sites). World Heritage sites deserve the highest possible standards of protection and conservation and provide leadership in protected area management.

In addition to a number of prominent conservation success stories, there have been several important advances in the implementation of the World Heritage Convention over the past 30 years including:

  1. The development of thematic studies on key biomes as part of a World Heritage Global Strategy to fill gaps in the World Heritage List;
  2. Recognition of outstanding linkages between people and the environment with the inclusion of cultural landscapes and mixed sites on the World Heritage List;
  3. Greater understanding that many World Heritage sites have traditional, sacred and spiritual values;
  4. Greater use of innovative approaches to World Heritage conservation including serial and transboundary sites;
  5. The development of a Global Training Strategy for World Heritage; and
  6. Added momentum for the Convention’s role in conserving biodiversity particularly through existing and new partnerships and the significant financial support of the United Nations Foundation (UNF).
However, the current World Heritage List continues to have significant gaps in its coverage of the world's key terrestrial, freshwater and marine biomes of outstanding universal value. There are also a number of World Heritage sites that are “In Danger”, and many others face serious threats and management challenges. War and lack of security are particularly intractable causes in some regions.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the World Heritage cross-cutting theme at the Vth IUCN World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. DECLARE their wholehearted support for the World Heritage Convention as a highly effective international instrument, which provides invaluable international reinforcement for local, national and regional efforts to protect the world’s outstanding natural and cultural heritage;

2. ENCOURAGE countries that have not yet joined the World Heritage Convention to do so at the earliest opportunity;

3. NOTE with appreciation the action of the International Council on Mining and Metals and Shell in declaring that they will treat World Heritage sites as ‘no-go’ areas for their exploration and extractive activities and calls on all other members of the mining, oil and gas industries to make the same commitment;

4. CALL on the international community to give special protection to World Heritage sites in regions affected by war and civil unrest;

5. URGE the international community, including the private sector, to recognise and respect World Heritage sites for their international legal status and for their global significance to this and future generations, ensuring in particular that they do not promote or support activities that threaten them;

6. CALL on the World Heritage Committee, the States Parties, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, IUCN (and the other Advisory Bodies, International Council on Monuments and Sites and the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property, as appropriate) to:

a. COMPLETE the assessment of potential World Heritage natural sites around the world giving priority to the identification and nomination of outstanding natural and cultural heritage in key terrestrial, freshwater and marine biomes;
b. FURTHER SUPPORT work to identify outstanding places that may merit consideration for World Heritage nomination;
c. ENCOURAGE the preparation of regionally harmonised lists of potential World Heritage sites;
d. ENSURE that all sites of outstanding universal value are nominated for inclusion in the World Heritage List and ensure that all stakeholders with relevant expertise are able to participate in the process;
e. PROMOTE the identification, nomination and protection of World Heritage serial and transboundary sites and large biological corridors, Biosphere Reserves or other bio-regional scale initiatives to include World Heritage areas;
f. REINFORCE the goals of the World Heritage Convention, the governance, effective management and conservation of World Heritage sites by:
i. Involving local expertise in all World Heritage activities;
ii. Establishing appropriate public, private and community partnerships for the benefit of the local communities living in and around World Heritage sites;
iii. Enhancing the standards of protection and monitoring;
iv. Strengthening national and international commitment for their conservation and monitoring;
v. Mobilising additional financial and technical resources for priority measures; and
vi. Building capacity at national and local levels;
g. WORK with governments, civil society, and the private sector to demonstrate how World Heritage status can contribute to effective partnerships between global, national and local stakeholders to ensure environmental, economic and social benefits within and beyond the boundaries of World Heritage sites; and
h. RECOGNISE and promote the special status of World Heritage sites at the national and international level to lever additional resources for conservation for these sites and the broader system of protected areas;
7. URGE the global donor community to follow the leadership given by the UN Foundation and consider giving greater special support to World Heritage sites in recognition of their outstanding universal value to present and future generations; and

8. CALL on UNESCO, secretariats of other multilateral environmental agreements and IUCN, to seek further international, regional and national synergies and integration between the work of the World Heritage Convention and other regional and international conventions dealing with terrestrial and marine biodiversity and protected areas, in particular the Convention on Biological Diversity, the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change and the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands. Possibilities for joint work programmes to benefit World Heritage conservation should be explored.

Recommendation 22
Building a Global System of Marine and Coastal Protected Area Networks

The 17th IUCN General Assembly (San Jose, Costa Rica; 1988) adopted Recommendation 17.38 (Protection of the coastal and marine environment), which called on international bodies and all nations to establish a global representative system of marine protected areas (MPAs) to provide for the protection, restoration, wise use, understanding and enjoyment of the marine heritage of the world in perpetuity. Also, delegates attending the IVth World Parks Congress (Caracas, 1992) adopted Recommendation 11 (Marine Protected Areas), which called for the establishment of a global network of marine protected areas.

And, more recently, the 8th meeting of the Subsidiary Body on Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (SBSTTA) of the convention on biological diversity noted in March 2003 that “… the data available indicate that regionally and globally, marine and coastal protected area networks are severely deficient, and probably protect a very small proportion of marine and coastal environments." The SBSSTA also recommended that the goal for marine and coastal protected areas work under the Convention should be the “establishment and maintenance of marine and coastal protected areas that are effectively managed, ecologically based, and contribute to a permanent representative global network of marine and coastal protected areas, building upon national networks”.

The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands has made a significant contribution to the establishment of marine and coastal protected areas. The Convention also has site criteria in relation to the fish habitat importance of wetland ecosystems, has developed guidelines for managing wetlands within integrated coastal zone management frameworks and has specific guidelines for identifying Wetlands of International Importance.

There are concerns that more than 60 percent of the human population lives in coastal zones and they will increasingly put marine and coastal biodiversity under pressure and undermine the foundation for coastal economies. Thus, continuing loss of marine, estuarine, and other aquatic habitats is one of the greatest long-term threats to biodiversity, dependent species and the viability of commercial and recreational fisheries.

Urgent action is required to restore fisheries that have collapsed, avoid over-fishing of stocks already fully utilised, minimise the ecological effects of by-catch, to species and ecosystems and limit habitat destruction. Marine protected areas (MPAs) have been shown to be an effective means to support biodiversity and species conservation as well as supporting ecologically and economically sustainable fisheries when managed in the context of human societies that are dependent on marine ecosystems.

MPAs covering the full range of IUCN categories are widely recognised by coastal nations as flexible and valuable tools for science based, integrated area management (including highly protected marine reserves and areas managed for multiple uses) supporting ecosystem-based management, because they can help conserve critical habitat, foster the recovery of overexploited and endangered species, maintain marine communities, and promote sustainable use.

There are further concerns that climate related global threats cannot be addressed by conventional management measures alone, and will require new and innovative approaches.

The 2002 World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) emphasised the need to maintain the productivity and biodiversity of important marine and coastal areas, and set target dates of:

  1. 2012 for the establishment of representative MPA networks based on scientific information and consistent with international law;
  2. 2015 for the restoration of depleted fish stocks; and
  3. 2010 for the application of the ecosystem approach to ocean and fisheries management.
Also the FAO Code of Conduct for Responsible Fisheries emphasises the integration of MPAs into the sustainable use of marine natural resources.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Marine Cross-Cutting Theme at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

CALL on the international community as a whole to:

1. Establish by 2012 a global system of effectively managed, representative networks of marine and coastal protected areas, consistent with international law and based on scientific information, that:

a. Greatly increases the marine and coastal area managed in marine protected areas by 2012; these networks should be extensive and include strictly protected areas that amount to at least 20-30% of each habitat, and contribute to a global target for healthy and productive oceans;

b. Facilitates and incorporates understanding, support and collaboration at local, national and international levels to design and develop such networks through sharing of knowledge, skills and experience in conservation and the achievement of sustainable socio-economic benefits;

c. Assists in the implementation of appropriate global and regional agreements, conventions and frameworks;

d. Is designed to be resilient* , particularly in the face of large scale threats linked to global change; this will require building flexibility and adaptation into their design and management;

e. Incorporates both new and strengthened existing MPA sites with varying purposes and management approaches;

f. Integrates MPAs with other ocean, coastal, and land governance policies, as recommended by the Jakarta Mandate, to achieve sustainable fisheries, biodiversity conservation, species protection, and integrated watershed, coastal, ocean and high seas and polar management objectives;

g. Contributes to in situ conservation of threatened and endangered species and their habitat;

h. Includes strictly protected marine reserves that contribute to protection of diverse marine habitats and ecosystem structure, biodiversity conservation, species protection recovery of endangered species, public education, and sustainable fisheries management;

i. In the sustainable management of fisheries, is an integral component that can contribute significantly to the management of species with special management needs. This may include protection for critical life history stages, such as through protection of spawning grounds;

j. Can provide a framework that can contribute significantly to the management of species, with special management needs including highly migratory species, ecosystems and habitats;

k. Engages stakeholders including local and traditional communities through participatory processes in the design, planning and management and, sharing of benefits of marine protected areas;

l. Protects and strengthens relatively intact marine and coastal areas for species and habitats that are not yet significantly degraded by direct or indirect human impacts and represent important biodiversity values;

m. Implements best available, science-based measures reflecting international policy and practice and are consistent with international law as reflected in the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea and other instruments;

n. Uses management effectiveness assessments to promote adaptive management, taking into account the approaches, issues and concepts outlined in WPC Recommendation 5.18;

o. Builds the best available science on connectivity into marine and coastal protected area network design, in order to create networks that are ecologically coherent;

p. Provides appropriate incentives and support for the implementation of diverse portfolios of financing mechanisms and management approaches which, together with supportive local and national policies, provide for the long-term sustainability of MPA networks;

q. Is embedded within wider integrated coastal and marine management frameworks that include collaboration among resource management bodies and ensure linkages among marine coastal and terrestrial protected areas to address potential threats beyond area boundaries; and

r. Sets performance objectives for global, national and regional networks of MPAs to meet fisheries, biodiversity, habitat stabilization and societal needs.

2. Implement an ecosystem-based approach to sustainable fisheries management and marine biodiversity conservation:

a. Through marine protected areas integrated with other marine and coastal governance and management actions, as appropriate, through the application of best available science and consistent with international law to:
i. Provide sustainable socio-economic returns to local and traditional communities and industry;
ii. Protect important habitats and areas sensitive to particular gear impacts and minimise negative impacts on the food web;
iii. Restore depleted fisheries; and
iv. Build a biogeographic based framework for maintaining ecosystem structure and function through MPA networks;
b. Through multilateral consideration of appropriate criteria, frameworks and incentives for integrated networks of local, national, and regional marine protected areas, including transboundary areas, and for effective compliance and enforcement to effectively address challenges within and beyond national boundaries, consistent with international law;

c. Through recognition of MPA networks as an integral component in sustainable fisheries management which should complement and not be used as a substitute for normal fisheries management practice;

d. Through fostering an on-going dialogue with all fisheries sectors to develop mutual understanding and the transfer of knowledge in both directions and to ensure the process and outcomes occur in a transparent and trusting environment. This may be enhanced by:

i. The ability of Regional Fisheries Management Organizations to become integral stakeholders in MPAs; and
ii. Elaborating MPA theory and practice to facilitate dialogue with fishers and fishery management;
e. Through the designation of marine protected areas, including those within Large Marine Ecosystems, as one of the strategies applied to the recovery of depleted fish stocks reduction of coastal pollution and conservation and restoration of biodiversity;

f. Consistent with the precautionary approach, and which ensures that the burden of proof that the environment is not harmed resides with those who commercially benefit from MPA resources; and

g. Which sets performance objectives for global, national and regional networks of MPAs to meet the fisheries, biodiversity, ecosystem stabilization and societal needs.

Note* : Resilience is the ability of an ecosystem to recover from disturbances within a reasonable timeframe. Components of resilient MPA networks include effective management; risk spreading through inclusion of replicates of representative habitats; full protection of refugia that can serve as reliable sources of seed for replenishment; and connectivity to link these refugia with vulnerable areas within the network.

Recommendation 23
Protecting Marine Biodiversity and Ecosystem Processes through Marine Protected Areas beyond National Jurisdiction

The past 30 years of ocean exploration have revealed an incredible diversity of life inhabiting our oceans, including deep ocean ecosystems and communities with a wealth of endemic species; however, much of the oceans biology and ecology remains poorly explored and understood. The common assumption that living marine resources are inexhaustible has been proven incorrect. Recent technological advances and expanding human uses in the high seas are sequentially depleting fish stocks, destroying ocean biodiversity, productivity and ecosystem processes. The oceans are in a state of crisis and must be given an opportunity to recover. Therefore urgent legally binding actions are necessary at international, regional and national levels to conserve this vital biodiversity.

Resolution 2.20 (Conservation of Marine Biodiversity) adopted at the 2nd World Conservation Congress (Amman, 2000) calls on IUCN, member governments and relevant organizations to explore an appropriate range of tools, including high seas MPAs, to implement effective protection and sustainable use of biodiversity, species and ecosystem processes on the high seas and calls on national governments, international agencies and the non-governmental community to better integrate established multilateral agencies and existing legal mechanisms to identify areas of the high seas suitable for collaborative management action.

The World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) (Johannesburg, 2002) highlighted the need to promote oceans conservation, including:

  1. Maintaining the productivity and biodiversity of important and vulnerable marine and coastal areas (MCPAs), including in areas within and beyond national jurisdiction;
  2. Encouraging the application of the ecosystem approach by 2010 to ocean and fisheries management; and
  3. Developing and facilitating the use of diverse approaches and tools, including the establishment of MPAs consistent with international law and based on scientific information, including representative networks by 2012.
The 8th meeting of the Subsidiary Body for Scientific, Technical and Technological Advice (March, 2003) of the CBD has forwarded a recommendation which will be considered at the 7th Conference of the Parties to Convention (February, 2004) that specifically recognized "an urgent need to establish in areas beyond national jurisdiction further marine protected areas consistent with international law and based on scientific information, including in relation to areas of seamounts, hydrothermal vents, cold-water corals and open ocean" and requested the Secretariat, working in conjunction with other international and regional bodies "to identify appropriate mechanisms for their establishment and effective management."

In addition, the 4th Meeting of the United Nations Informal Consultative Process (UN ICP, June, 2003) has recommended to the United Nations General Assembly, that it, inter alia, reiterate its call for urgent consideration of ways to improve the management of risks to seamounts and cold water coral reefs, and invite relevant international bodies at all levels to urgently consider how to better address, on a scientific and precautionary basis, threats and risks to vulnerable and threatened marine ecosystems and biodiversity beyond national jurisdiction consistent with international law and the principles of integrated ecosystem-based management.

The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (UNCLOS) provides the global framework for ocean conservation and management of human activities. In areas beyond national jurisdiction, it obliges parties to protect and preserve the marine environment and to cooperate in conserving and managing marine living resources.

Heightened global cooperation is required to implement and build on the obligations in UNCLOS and other international legal agreements.

In light of the unique characteristics of deep ocean and high seas biodiversity, the growing urgency of the problems, and the nature of high seas jurisdiction, global coordinated action is essential to adopt a precautionary and ecosystems-based approach to management that includes a representative system of high seas marine protected area networks, and maintain thereby biodiversity, species, productivity and ecosystem processes for the generations to come.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Marine Cross-cutting Theme at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

STRONGLY RECOMMEND the international community as a whole to:

1. ENDORSE AND PROMOTE the WSSD Joint Plan of Implementation together with the goal of establishing a global system of effectively managed, representative networks of marine protected areas by 2012 that includes within its scope the world's oceans and seas beyond national jurisdiction, consistent with international law;

2. UTILIZE available mechanisms and authorities to establish and effectively manage by 2008 at least five ecologically significant and globally representative HSMPAs incorporating strictly protected areas consistent with international law and based on sound science to enhance the conservation of marine biodiversity, species, productivity and ecosystems;

3. DEVELOP and make available scientific, legal, socio-economic, and policy research relevant to the development of a global representative system of high seas MPA networks and the protection and sustainable use of biodiversity, species and ecosystem processes on the high seas;

4. ESTABLISH a global system of effectively managed, representative networks of marine protected areas, including through:

a. Taking immediate and urgent action to protect the biodiversity and productivity of seamounts, cold-water coral communities and other vulnerable high seas features and ecosystems and especially to safeguard species and habitats at immediate risk of irrevocable damage or loss;
b. Taking immediate and urgent action to protect the biodiversity and productivity dependent on large-scale, persistent oceanographic features, such as currents and frontal systems, known to support marine life and contain critical habitat for species such as those listed in the IUCN Red List and the appendices of CITES, CMS and related Agreements; and
c. Developing mechanisms to enable urgent and long-lasting protection of non-target species threatened by high seas fishing activities, particularly by ensuring that measures to mitigate by-catch and incidental catch are developed for and implemented in all relevant fisheries;
5. INITIATE action to identify marine ecosystems, habitats, areas, processes and biodiversity hotspots for priority attention, develop agreed criteria and guidelines for the identification, establishment, management and enforcement of HSMPAs, develop guidance for a representative system of HSMPA networks, establish sustainable financing strategies and determine future research needs and priorities;

6. COOPERATE to develop and promote a global framework or approach, building on UNCLOS, the CBD, the UN Fish Stocks Agreement, CMS and other relevant agreements, to facilitate the creation of a global representative system of high seas MPA networks, consistent with international law, to ensure its effective management and enforcement, and coordinate and harmonize applicable international agreements, mechanisms and authorities in accordance with modern principles of precautionary, ecosystem-based and integrated management and sound governance as defined in the UN principles;

7. NOTE that WCPA High Seas Working Group is developing a Ten Year Strategy to Promote Development of a Global Representative System of High Seas Marine Protected Area Networks (Ten-Year HSMPA Strategy) as introduced at the World Park Congress; and

8. JOIN TOGETHER through formal and informal networks to promote the development of a global representative system of high seas MPA networks within their own governments and organizations and in broader international forum to achieve protection of the biological diversity, species, productivity and sustainable use of the high seas, with the global representative system of MPA networks being a principal tool, reporting back on progress at the International Marine Protected Area Congress, Australia 2005, as well as at other relevant forums.

Recommendation 24
Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas

Indigenous peoples, their lands, waters and other resources have made a substantial contribution to the conservation of global ecosystems. For this trend to continue, where appropriate, protected areas, future and present, should take into account the principle of collaborative management attending to the interests and needs of indigenous peoples. Many protected areas of the world encroach and are found within and overlap with lands, territories and resources of indigenous and traditional peoples. In many cases the establishment of these protected areas has affected the rights, interests and livelihoods of indigenous peoples and traditional peoples and subsequently resulted in persistent conflicts.

Effective and sustainable conservation can be better achieved if the objectives of protected areas do not violate the rights of indigenous peoples living in and around them.

It is widely acknowledged that successful implementation of conservation programmes can only be guaranteed on long term basis when there is consent for and approval by indigenous peoples among others, because their cultures, knowledge and territories contribute to the building of comprehensive protected areas. There is often commonality of objectives between protected areas and the need of indigenous peoples to protect their lands, territories and resources from external threats.

In addition to the benefits to conservation, it is also necessary to acknowledge that indigenous peoples have suffered human rights abuses in connection with protected areas in the past and in some cases continue to suffer abuses today.

Resolution WCC 1.53 Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas, adopted by IUCN members at the 1st World Conservation Congress (Montreal, 1996), promotes a policy based on the principles of:

  1. Recognition of the rights of indigenous peoples with regard to their lands or territories and resources that fall within protected areas;
  2. Recognition of the necessity of reaching agreements with indigenous peoples prior to the establishment of protected areas in their lands or territories; and
  3. Recognition of the rights of the indigenous peoples concerned to participate effectively in the management of the protected areas established on their lands or territories, and to be consulted on the adoption of any decision that affects their rights and interests over those lands or territories.
At the request of the World Commission on Protected Areas (WCPA), IUCN's Council endorsed in 1999 "Principles and Guidelines on Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas", in response to actions called for in Resolution WCC 1.53. In addition, several inter-governmental bodies and international agreements, as well as international conservation organizations, have adopted and promote policies that support recognition of the rights and interests of indigenous peoples in the context of biodiversity conservation and protection of the environment.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Cross-Cutting Theme on Communities and Equity and in the Stream on Governance at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003) stressing that the following recommendations shall be conducted in full partnership with the freely chosen representatives of indigenous peoples:

1. RECOMMEND governments, inter-governmental organizations, NGOs, local communities and civil societies to:

a. ENSURE that existing and future protected areas respect the rights of indigenous peoples;

b. CEASE all involuntary resettlement and expulsions of indigenous peoples from their lands in connection with protected areas, as well as involuntary sedentarization of mobile indigenous peoples;

c. ENSURE the establishment of protected areas is based on the free, prior informed consent of indigenous peoples, and of prior social, economic, cultural and environmental impact assessment, undertaken with the full participation of indigenous peoples;

d. Further ELABORATE and APPLY, in coordination with indigenous peoples, the IUCN-WWF Principles and Guidelines on Indigenous and Traditional Peoples and Protected Areas (available at http://www.iucn.org/themes/wcpa/pubs/pdfs/ Indig_people.pdf), as well as principles that build on IUCN Resolution WCC 1.53 and which fully respect the rights, interests, and aspirations of indigenous peoples;

e. RECOGNISE the value and importance of protected areas designated by indigenous peoples as a sound basis for securing and extending the protected areas network;

f. ESTABLISH and ENFORCE appropriate laws and policies to protect the intellectual property of indigenous peoples with regards to their traditional knowledge, innovation systems and cultural and biological resources and penalise all biopiracy activities;

g. ENACT laws and policies that recognise and guarantee indigenous peoples’ rights over their ancestral lands and waters;

h. ESTABLISH and implement mechanisms to address any historical injustices caused through the establishment of protected areas, with special attention given to land and water tenure rights and historical/traditional rights to access natural resources and sacred sites within protected areas;

i. ESTABLISH participatory mechanisms for the restitution of indigenous peoples' lands, territories and resources that have been taken over by protected areas without their free, prior informed consent, and for providing prompt and fair compensation, agreed upon in a fully transparent and culturally appropriate manner;

j. ESTABLISH a high level, independent Commission on Truth and Reconciliation on Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas;

k. ENSURE respect for indigenous peoples’ decision-making authority and SUPPORT their local, sustainable management and conservation of natural resources in protected areas, recognising the central role of traditional authorities, wherever appropriate, and institutions and representative organizations;

l. REQUIRE protected area managers to actively support indigenous peoples' initiatives aimed at the revitalization and application, where appropriate, of traditional knowledge and practices in land, water, and resource management within protected areas;

m. UNDERTAKE a review of all existing biodiversity conservation laws and policies that impact on indigenous peoples and ensure that all parties work in a coordinated manner to ensure effective involvement and participation of indigenous peoples;

n. DEVELOP and promote incentives to support indigenous peoples' self-declared and self-managed protected areas and other conservation initiatives to protect the lands, waters, territories and resources from external threats and exploitation;

o. ENSURE open and transparent processes for genuine negotiation with indigenous peoples in relation to any plans to establish or expand protected area systems, so that their lands, waters, territories and natural resources are preserved and decisions affecting them are taken in mutually agreed terms;

p. INTEGRATE indigenous knowledge and education systems in interpretation of and education about natural, cultural and spiritual values of protected areas; and

q. ENSURE that protected areas are geared towards poverty alleviation and improve the living standards of the communities around and within the parks through effective and agreeable benefit sharing mechanisms;


a. FORMULATE and CARRY OUT a programme of work, with the full participation of indigenous peoples, to support their initiatives and interests regarding protected areas, and to actively involve indigenous peoples' representative authorities, institutions and organizations in its development and implementation;
b. PROVIDE support and funding to indigenous peoples for community conserved, co-managed and indigenous owned and managed protected areas;
c. ENCOURAGE international conservation agencies and organizations to adopt clear policies on indigenous peoples and conservation and establish mechanisms for the redress of grievances; and
d. CONDUCT an implementation review of the World Conservation Congress Resolution 1.53 Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas and the IUCN-WWF Principles and Guidelines on Indigenous and Traditional Peoples and Protected Areas; and
3. RECOMMEND IUCN Members to consider the establishment of an IUCN Commission on Indigenous Peoples and Protected Areas at its next World Conservation Congress.

Recommendation 25
Co-management of Protected Areas

The benefits of promoting and strengthening partnerships for conservation have been repeatedly stressed by IUCN, from Council Resolution 22 of 1952 to Resolution 1.42 of the IUCN World Conservation Congress in Montreal (1996) and Resolution 2.15 of the IUCN World Conservation Congress Amman (2000). They have also been emphasised by the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Millennium Development Goals and the WSSD plan of action.

Co-managed protected areas (CMPAs) are defined as protected areas (as per IUCN categories I-VI) where management authority, responsibility and accountability are shared among two or more stakeholders, including government bodies and agencies at various levels, indigenous and local communities, non-governmental organizations and private operators, or even among different state governments as in the case of trans-boundary protected areas.

In the 21st Century the size, number, and complexity of protected areas systems has increased to impressive proportions. In accordance with good governance principles, consolidating, expanding and improving this global system of protected areas should be done while respecting the rights, interests and concerns of all stakeholders, including their right to participate in decision-making in the establishment and management of protected areas. The sharing of protected area management authority, responsibilities, benefits and costs should be distributed among relevant actors, according to legitimate entitlements. Such entitlements should be defined through a negotiation process that specifically involves disadvantaged groups, and results in stronger engagement of civil society in conservation.

Are governments alone able to ensure the accomplishment of all their protected areas conservation objectives and social requirements? Some estimate this to be plainly impossible. Fortunately, there is a substantial wealth and diversity of conservation-relevant knowledge, skills, resources and institutions at the disposal of indigenous, mobile and local communities, local governments, NGOs, resource users, and the private sector. Co-management settings are one of the most effective ways to mobilise such conservation-relevant resources, but are they successfully enlisted and implemented?

  1. Current efforts to involve indigenous peoples, mobile peoples and local communities in protected area management are often limited to consulting them, asking their help in implementing predetermined activities or assigning to them some “benefits” (often unrelated to the costs incurred), without effective discussion and negotiation of options. This may be due to various causes, but lack of supportive policies and capacities are at the roots of many failures. Actions are needed to facilitate: Understanding the potential of, and obstacles to, co-management approaches;
  2. Undertaking co-management processes;
  3. Negotiating co-management agreements;
  4. Developing co-management organizations;
  5. Integrating adaptive governance approaches with more familiar adaptive management exercises; and
  6. Learning by doing though participatory monitoring and evaluation.
The diversity of co-management approaches makes them capable of fitting different contexts. If properly understood and adopted, co-management can lead towards more effective and transparent sharing of decision-making powers, a more active, conservation-friendly and central role of indigenous, mobile and local communities in protected area management, and a better synergy of the conservation capacities.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Communities and Equity Cross-Cutting Theme at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

RECOMMEND international conventions, governments, protected area agencies, donor agencies, conservation NGOs, communities, and the private sector, and in particular IUCN - The World Conservation Union as potential inspirer and leader of well coordinated and synergistic efforts, to:

1. SUPPORT the review, consolidation, strengthening and expansion of existing experiences of co-management of protected areas;

2. PROMOTE the participation of stakeholders in decision-making concerning protected area management, with particular regards to indigenous, mobile and local communities, and disadvantaged groups via a range of mechanisms including information generation and sharing; joint visioning and participatory assessment exercises; support to stakeholder organising and capacity building; negotiated management agreements and benefit sharing; and full empowerment and accountability for conservation in effectively co-managed and community-managed areas;

3. CREATE or strengthen enabling legal and policy frameworks for co-management in protected areas;

4. UNDERTAKE programmes to develop and strengthen institutional and human capacities for co-management of protected areas as part of efforts towards good governance and more effective management, including setting up basic training and refresher courses for natural resource managers, national and international exchange visits and joint learning initiatives among PA institutions and sites engaged in co-management efforts;

5. PROMOTE participatory action-research in co-managed protected areas with emphasis on stakeholder identification, social communication initiatives, negotiation processes, consensus-based decision making, co-management outcomes and impacts, and legislation and policies for a supporting environment;

6. EXPAND the sharing of experience and lessons learned on co-management of protected areas at national, regional and international levels including by strengthening the work of the Co-management Working Group (CMWG) of the IUCN Commission on Environmental, Economics and Social Policy (CEESP) and of the joint World Commission on Protected Areas/CEESP Theme on Indigenous and Local Communities, Equity and Protected Areas (TILCEPA); and

7. CALL upon the Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity to address co-management issues in their programme of work for protected areas, in particular with regard to enabling legal and policy framework, capacity building, participatory action-research and exchanges of experiences and lessons learned.

Recommendation 26
Community Conserved Areas

A considerable part of the earth’s biodiversity survives on territories under the ownership, control, or management of indigenous peoples and local (including mobile) communities. However, the fact that such peoples and communities are actively or passively conserving many of these sites through traditional or modern means, has hitherto been neglected in formal conservation circles. Such sites, herein called Community Conserved Areas (CCAs), are extremely diverse in their institutions of governance, objectives of management, ecological and cultural impacts, and other attributes. Two primary characteristics distinguish them:

  1. Predominant or exclusive control and management by communities, and
  2. Commitment to conservation of biodiversity, and/or its achievement through various means.
In this context, CCAs are natural and modified ecosystems, including significant biodiversity, ecological services and cultural values, voluntarily conserved by indigenous and local communities through customary laws or other effective means. The term as used here is meant to connote a broad and open approach to categorizing such community initiatives, and is not intended to constrain the ability of communities to conserve their areas in the way they feel appropriate.

Various international instruments dealing with environmental and human rights have recognised the role of communities in relation to natural resource management, such as:

  1. The emphasis provided by the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) to the biodiversity-relevant knowledge, skills, innovations, and practices of communities; or
  2. The Draft Declaration of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which acknowledges the right of such peoples to control and manage their territories.
Today, most CCAs remain unrecognised in national and international conservation systems, and are largely outside the official protected area networks of countries. This may be because the resource management systems of CCAs are often based on customary tenure systems, norms and institutions that are not formally or legally recognized in many countries.

CCAs as they exist today serve the management objectives of different protected area categories.

Nevertheless, CCAs everywhere are facing threats, including:

  1. Those resulting from unclear and insecure tenurial arrangements;
  2. Unsustainable developmental projects;
  3. Delegitimization of customary rights;
  4. Centralized political decision-making processes;
  5. Social, economic and political inequities;
  6. Loss of knowledge and cultural change; and
  7. Commercialization of resources.
It is therefore recognized that communities need support and facilitation to respond to these threats, and to enable them to reach greater security in their conservation and sustainable use practices.

Mindful of these points, participants in the cross-cutting Theme entitled “Communities and Equity” have deliberated on CCAs in several sessions of the 5th World Parks Congress, and have concluded that national and international recognition of such areas is a urgent necessity.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Communities and Equity Cross-Cutting Theme at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. RECOMMEND governments to:

a. PROMOTE a multisectoral process for recognizing, enlisting, evaluating, and delisting CCAs;
b. RECOGNIZE and PROMOTE CCAs as a legitimate form of biodiversity conservation, and where communities so choose, include them within national systems of protected areas, through appropriate changes in legal and policy regimes;
c. ENSURE that official policies, guidelines, and principles, recognise diverse local (formal or informal) arrangements developed by communities on their own or in collaboration with other actors, for the management of CCAs;
d. FACILITATE the continuation of existing CCAs, and their spread to other sites, through a range of measures including, financial, technical, human, information, research, public endorsement, capacity-building, and other resources or incentives that are considered appropriate by the communities concerned, as well as the restitution of traditional and customary rights;
e. ACKNOWLEDGE that it may be appropriate for some existing protected areas to be managed as CCAs, including the transfer of management of such areas to relevant communities;
f. PROVIDE protection to CCAs against external threats they face, including those mentioned in the preamble;
g. RESPECT the sanctity and importance of CCAs in all operations that could affect such sites or the relevant communities, and give particular attention to applying the principles of Prior Informed Consent, participatory environmental impact assessments, and other measures as elaborated in decisions and documents of the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD);
h. SUPPORT self-monitoring and evaluation of CCAs by the relevant communities, and participatory monitoring and evaluation by outside agencies or actors; and
i. PROVIDE impartial information when and where needed and/or asked for by the relevant communities;
2. ALSO RECOMMEND communities to:
a. COMMIT to conserving the biodiversity in CCAs, maintaining ecological services, and protecting associated cultural values;
b. CONSIDER extending the network of CCAs to sites not currently being conserved or sustainably managed;
c. STRENGTHEN or initiate measures to respond to forces that threaten CCAs, including those mentioned in the preamble above;
d. RECOGNIZE the ecological, cultural, and other values of the CCAs and species that are within territories the communities are controlling and managing;
e. SEEK public recognition for the CCAs they are managing where it is appropriate, including from governments; and
f. COMMIT to strengthening or developing effective mechanisms for internal accountability;
3. FURTHER RECOMMEND conservation agencies and other non-government organizations (NGOs), donor agencies, private sector, and other actors:
a. RESPECT the sanctity and importance of CCAs in all their operations that could affect such sites or the relevant communities, and in particular activities that could adversely affect them; and
b. PROVIDE support of various kinds to CCAs, where considered appropriate by the concerned community, including to help build capacity;
4. CALL on international organizations to:
a. RECOGNIZE CCAs in all relevant instruments and databases, including in the United Nations List of Protected Areas, and the World Protected Areas Database;
b. PROVIDE adequate space for consideration of CCAs in relevant documents, such as the State of the World’s Protected Areas Report, and Protected Areas in the 21st Century;
c. PROMOTE 0CCAs through appropriate programmes of work, in particular the Programme of Work of the CBD on protected areas; and
d. INTEGRATE CCAs into the IUCN Protected Areas Category System, through the introduction of a dimension of governance, appropriate interpretations and additions to the definitions and guidelines especially regarding cultural values, and work towards identifying CCAs that would fit into each of the six IUCN Protected Areas Categories.

Recommendation 27
Mobile Indigenous Peoples and Conservation

Mobile Indigenous Peoples (i.e. nomads, pastoralists, shifting agriculturalists and hunting-gatherers) are a subset of traditional and Indigenous Peoples whose livelihoods depend on extensive common property* use of natural resources and whose mobility is both a management strategy for sustainable land use and conservation and a distinctive source of cultural identity. In many cases protected areas have alienated Mobile Indigenous Peoples from lands and resources traditionally used by them, with the consequent loss of livelihoods and erosion of cultures. Their rights are erroneously or sometimes deliberately ignored, and participation is usually only granted to local sedentary people living around the protected areas. Their practices create and sustain important linkages in the landscape. Policies of sedentarisation disable Mobile Indigenous Peoples of cultural identity, capacity to manage land properly and lead to poverty.

There is scientific evidence that mobile use of natural resources has been in harmony with nature, and in many cases promotes environmental integrity and conservation of both wild and domestic biodiversity. Mutually reinforcing partnerships between Mobile Indigenous Peoples and conservationists are essential for the long-term success of conservation initiatives.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Communities and Equity Cross-cutting Theme in the Stream on Governance at the Vth World Parks Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. ENDORSED the principles of the Dana Declaration, and referring to the Dana Declaration, and to the Mobile Indigenous Peoples’ workshops in WPC;

2. ACKNOWLEDGE the overall recommendations concerning Co-management of Protected Areas (Recommendation 5.25) and Community Conserved Areas (Recommendation 5.26) as being relevant to Mobile Indigenous Peoples;

3. RECOMMEND that governments, NGOs, local communities, civil society, international organizations and inter-governmental bodies give due recognition to Mobile Indigenous Peoples’ rights and special capacities and needs and thereby:

a. ENSURE that Mobile Indigenous Peoples have secure and full rights to co-manage and self-manage their lands, that they can derive equitable benefits from the use of natural resources, including eco-tourism, and that their customary law is respected and recognised in national law;
b. RECOGNISE collective and customary rights of mobile communities and respect the integrity of the Mobile Indigenous Peoples’ resource management systems;
c. RECOGNISE Mobile Indigenous Peoples’ community conserved areas as a protected area governance type, and build upon their traditional and evolving institutions and customary norms;
d. PROMOTE policies to facilitate cross-border mobility and trade in transboundary protected areas by Mobile Indigenous Peoples who have traditionally lived in and used those areas;
e. ADOPT and promote adaptive management approaches that recognise the dependence of Mobile Indigenous Peoples on common property resources and build on their mobility and different lifestyles, livelihoods, resource rights and tenure, customary laws, and dynamic scales of land use;
f. ADAPT protected area and community conserved area management to the special needs of mobile communities, including their use rights, resource management practices, seasonal and temporal rights, corridors for movement, and targeting mobile use to achieve conservation objectives;
g. RESPECT, promote and integrate the use of traditional knowledge, institutions and customary laws and resource management practices of Mobile Indigenous Peoples alongside mainstream science on a complementary basis. Develop common conservation objectives. Ensure that development of protected areas and related interventions are evaluated on the basis of local knowledge and are implemented through Mobile Indigenous Peoples’ institutions;
h. RECOGNISE and guarantee the rights of Mobile Indigenous Peoples to the restitution of their lands, territories and resources, conserved and traditionally occupied and used sustainably by them, that have been incorporated within protected areas without their free, prior and informed consent; mobility should be restored where appropriate; and
i. PROMOTE cross-cultural dialogue and conflict resolution within and between mobile and sedentary people around and in protected areas; and
4. URGE Governments to approve the UN Draft Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as adopted in 1994 by the now UN Sub-Commission on the Promotion and Protection of Human Rights, and ratify and effectively implement ILO Convention 169 concerning Indigenous and Tribal Peoples in Independent Countries, where the relevant people so wish.

NOTE*: Common property systems have well-established community rules for use/ownership. They are not the same as open access and include such land use types as seasonal grazing, community conserved areas, etc.


Recommendation 28
Protected Areas: Mining and Energy

Minerals, which include metals, coal, hard rock, sand, gravel, and other underground natural resources such as oil, natural gas, are increasingly in demand in response to population growth, urbanisation, expansion in industry and farming, and the ever-more consumptive lifestyles that characterise the modern world. At the same time mining, which for the purpose of this motion includes exploration, exploitation, transportation, and processing of hydrocarbons, base metals, precious metals and other minerals, often has a damaging impact upon biodiversity and other natural and cultural values that protected areas are meant to safeguard.

Furthermore, many local and indigenous peoples living in or around protected areas have either suffered or gained insufficient benefits from the activities of extractive industries on land which they occupy or consider being theirs as they have at times from other land-uses including establishment of protected areas.

At the 2nd IUCN World Conservation Congress (Amman 2000), members adopted Recommendation 2.82 (Protection and conservation of biological diversity of protected areas from the negative impacts of mining and exploration), which: a) calls on State members of IUCN to prohibit mining exploration and extraction in category I-IV protected areas; b) recommends strict controls over such activities in category V and VI protected areas; c) urges strict standards governing changes of protected area boundaries to accommodate mining activities; and d) recommends environmental impact assessments to ensure that mining activities outside protected areas do not negatively impact them.

Since the Amman congress, and in accord with the Johannesburg Plan of Implementation which recognises the importance of minerals and mining for socio-economic development and of partnerships for sustainable development as well as the need to address the environmental, economic, health and social impacts of minerals and mining, members of the conservation community, the extractive industries and financial institutions have been engaged in seeking common ground around the issue of mining and protected areas, usually as part of broader dialogues on the extractive industries’ impact on the environment, in particular through the Energy and Biodiversity Initiative (EBI), the Extractive Industry Review of the World Bank, the Mining and Minerals and Sustainable Development (MMSD) initiative and the Dialogue between IUCN – The World Conservation Union and the International Council on Mining and Metals (ICMM).

At the 5th World Parks Congress there was considerable debate and discussion on this issue, in the context of linkages with private enterprise as a means of advancing common goals and ambitions. It was recognised that any such dialogues should explore all the key issues relating to biodiversity conservation and past, present and future impacts on local peoples, communities, and their environment. But despite the debate, there still remained considerable areas of disagreement, and no conclusive agreement on a precise way forward could be reached at this time.

Nevertheless, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Linkages in the Landscape/Seascape at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. REITERATE their support for IUCN World Conservation Congress Recommendation 2.82 (Amman, Jordan);

2. RECOGNISE that IUCN World Conservation Congress Recommendation 2.82 (Amman, 2000) taken together with prior WCC Resolutions on Indigenous Peoples can serve as a basis to guide and test the commitment and support of mining and energy companies for protected area conservation and management;

3. RECOGNISE that those elements of the conservation community and those elements of the extractive industry that have expressed a commitment to conserve biodiversity and maintain some protected areas, wish to continue and strengthen their ongoing dialogue and to make them more inclusive by inviting other members of their respective communities, governments (e.g. through UN bodies), international financial institutions, and other stakeholders to develop and promote best practice guidance in order to enhance industry’s contribution to biodiversity conservation; and

4. ALSO RECOGNISE that many people in the conservation community are strongly opposed to this dialogue because they believe it has the potential to undermine conservation efforts by the broader conservation community.

Recommendation 29
Poverty and Protected Areas

Protected areas play a vital role in sustainable development through protection and maintenance of biological diversity and of natural and associated cultural resources. Protected areas cannot be viewed as islands of conservation, divorced from the social and economic context within which they are located. Poverty, displacement, hunger and land degradation have a profound impact on bio-diversity and protected areas, and pose a very serious threat to their survival. Poverty is multi-dimensional (lack of assets / opportunities, vulnerability, and lack of power or voice), and protected areas have a powerful potential to make a significant contribution to poverty reduction and to the broader development framework established by the Millennium Development Goals and the WSSD Plan of Implementation.

Protected areas generate significant economic, environmental and social benefits. These benefits are realised at local, national and global levels. Unfortunately, a disproportionate amount of the costs of protected areas are borne locally. As with other forms of large-scale land use, many local communities have been marginalised and excluded from protected areas. Given that their natural and cultural wealth often constitutes an important asset for local communities, denying rights to these resources can exacerbate poverty. Protected Area establishment and management cannot be allowed to exacerbate poverty.

However, given the fact that many local communities living in and around protected areas have limited development opportunities, protected areas offer a currently untapped opportunity to contribute to poverty reduction while continuing to maintain their vital function in conserving biodiversity. Recognising the importance of people in conservation, we need to support poor communities to act as the new front-line of conservation. This implies new ways of working with local communities to act as custodians of biodiversity through working with Protected Area authorities, and to build their ability to manage their own areas.

Increasing the benefits of protected areas and reducing their costs to local people can help mobilise public support and reduce conflicts and the enforcement costs of Protected Area management, particularly in areas of widespread poverty. The long-term sustainability of Protected Area networks (including their growth through new forms of protected areas) and the achievement of poverty reduction are inextricably linked. The practical implications of realising this linkage will require new investment to enhance benefits and reduce costs. There is a need for strengthening existing and developing new financial mechanisms that can provide fair reward for stewardship of nationally and globally important biological resources. The convergence of the poverty reduction and Protected Area agendas represents a real opportunity to generate new and additional resources for conservation.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. CALL ON governments, inter-governmental organizations, private sector and civil society to adopt the following overarching principles on the linkage between protected areas and poverty:

a. In order to achieve their potential both to conserve biodiversity and to assist in reducing poverty, protected areas should be integrated within a broad sustainable development planning agenda;
b. Protected areas should strive to contribute to poverty reduction at the local level, and at the very minimum must not contribute to or exacerbate poverty;
c. Biodiversity should be conserved both for its value as a local livelihoods resource and as a national and global public good;
d. Equitable sharing of costs and benefits of protected areas should be ensured at local, national and global levels;
e. Where negative social, cultural and economic impacts occur, affected communities should be fairly and fully compensated; and
f. A gender perspective should be incorporated that encompasses the different roles of women and men in livelihood dynamics, thus contributing to equitable benefit sharing and more effective governance systems;
2. RECOMMEND that local actors, communities, governments, Protected Area authorities, inter-governmental organizations, private sector and conservation agencies develop policy, practices and forms of inclusive government for Protected Area management that enhance opportunities, reduce vulnerability, and empower the poor and vulnerable, especially in areas of severe poverty, based on:
a. Building partnerships with poor communities as actors and shareholders in Protected Area development;
b. Strengthening mechanisms for the poor to share actively in decision making related to protected areas and to be empowered as conservators in their own right;
c. Developing pro-poor mechanisms to reward environmental stewardship, including payments for environmental services, minimise and mitigate damages to both biodiversity and to livelihoods, and provide fair compensation for losses incurred from human-wildlife conflicts and from restricted access and decreased environmental services;
d. Respecting and recognising customary ownership, use and access rights for local people, particularly for the poor, during the negotiation and decision making processes, and preventing further loss of customary rights;
e. Improving accountability and transparency of decision making processes related to protected areas;
f. Developing more inclusive interpretations of Protected Area categories that reflect the interests and initiatives of the poor, including the role of community conserved areas;
g. Fostering programmes of restoration to deal with modified and degraded areas that yield biodiversity benefits as well as providing goods and services to improve livelihoods within protected areas and in the landscape surrounding them; and
h. Encouraging governments to reflect the above principles regarding local rights and opportunities related to protected areas in their legal and regulatory frameworks;
3. RECOMMEND that Governments, donors and other development partners consider how to maximise the contribution of protected areas to sustainable development, and in particular poverty reduction efforts, by:
a. Mainstreaming protected areas into national and international development planning and policy, particularly poverty reduction strategies and the implementation of the Millennium Development Goals;
b. Develop innovative financial and governance systems to optimise synergies between Protected Area management and poverty reduction efforts;
c. Increasing financial resources available for rewarding poor communities and poor countries for their stewardship of global public goods; and
d. Improving knowledge and understanding of linkages between protected areas and poverty reduction, and specifically the impact of protected areas on the livelihoods of the rural poor, negative and positive; and
4. RECOMMEND that the Parties to the Convention on Biological Diversity:
a. Develop guidelines on the management of protected areas based on the principles mentioned in paragraph 1 and 2, and ensure that National Biodiversity Strategies and Action Plans are aligned with poverty reduction strategies; and
b. Extend the principle of equitable benefit sharing to include all components of biological diversity.

Recommendation 30
Africa’s Protected Areas

Africa is home to almost one third of the World’s terrestrial biodiversity and African governments have set aside and committed resources for more than 1,200 national parks, wildlife reserves, and other protected areas, representing an area of more than 2 million sq. km., equal to 9% of Africa’s total land area. The commitment of African countries to conservation has also been expressed through their ratification of a number of agreements including the African Convention for Conservation of Nature and Natural Resources, the Convention on Biological Diversity, the Convention on Wetlands (= Ramsar Convention), the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals and the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Flora and Fauna.

Nevertheless, one of the most important environmental challenges facing Africa today is the need to reconcile its development needs with sustainable management of its natural resources.

Throughout Africa poverty remains one of the main causes and consequences of environmental degradation and resource depletion therefore without significant improvement in the living standard and livelihoods of the poor, environmental policies and conservation programmes will achieve little success. This is further exacerbated by the negative effects of international trade policies and practices.

Moreover, the transboundary nature of natural resource deterioration requires a regional and collective approach in order to use most effectively the available resources to address this problem.

Today, we recognize that Africa’s biodiversity is part of our common world heritage and the international community must urgently increase collaboration to protect it before large numbers of species of flora and fauna become extinct and unique ecosystems irreversibly collapse.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in sessions related to Africa Day at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

1. ENDORSE the decision of the African Ministers Conference on Environment (AMCEN) meeting in Maputo, Mozambique, June 9-10, 2003, to adopt the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) environment action plan and to establish the African Protected Areas Initiative (APAI) and the African Protected Areas Trust Fund (APATF) to ensure that Africa’s biodiversity is securely conserved in perpetuity while contributing to livelihoods and economic development; and

2. RECOMMEND that the international community:

a. Along with national, local and non-governmental organizations, provide technical and financial resources to operationalize the African Protected Areas Initiative (APAI); and
b. Establish partnerships with African institutions and organizations to promote the objectives of the African Protected Areas Initiative (APAI).
3. RECOMMEND that bilateral, multilateral, private sector, and NGOs provide financial and technical support to capitalize the African Protected Areas Trust Fund (APATF).

4. ENDORSE AND SUPPORT the Durban Consensus on Africa’s Protected Areas in the New Millennium.

Recommendation 31
Protected Areas, Freshwater and Integrated River Basin Management Frameworks

The integration of inland water protected areas into lake and river basin management frameworks offers the potential of a range of win-win opportunities. These protected areas can link biodiversity conservation with water and food security, poverty reduction flood and flow management and human health objectives.

Globally the diversion of water for human consumption is growing at a rapid rate such that an increasing number of the world’s rivers no longer regularly reach the sea. It has been estimated that 54% of accessible runoff is now appropriated by humans. The IUCN-World Bank initiated World Commission on Dams has drawn attention to the impacts, social, economic and environmental from large dams; infrastructure that plays a major role in diverting water away from freshwater ecosystems. In many parts of the world sub-surface waters are also being exploited unsustainably.

Changes to river flows and other key ecosystem processes and the diversion of water have had a serious impact on biological diversity. WWF’s Living Planet Index indicates that freshwater biodiversity has declined at a much greater rate than in either the forest or marine biomes, declining by 50% from 1970-2000. This is also a catastrophe for people as millions of the world’s rural poor depend on the fisheries and other natural resources that have declined or are at risk of decline with changes in stream flow.

Protected areas are a vital component of conserving and managing freshwater resources, ecosystems and biodiversity. Their establishment best undertaken through the processes of integrated river basin or watershed management, including the development of an adequate network of representative protected areas.

Experience has shown that in order to be effective, integrated river basin management (IRBM) must involve full consultation with and participation of stakeholders, including local communities and indigenous peoples.

The destruction or degradation of inland water (including groundwater) and estuarine systems ecosystems is acknowledged as a key factor in the declines of biological diversity and water quality. It is estimated that globally 50% of wetlands have been converted to other uses.

The Ramsar Convention on Wetlands has responded with its Wise Use ‘toolkit’, including guidelines on integrating wetlands into river basin management and the allocation of water to maintain wetland ecosystems. These tools complement the Ramsar Convention’s list of Wetlands of International Importance.

The Convention on Biological Diversity is also moving to escalate its response through the proposed new programme of work on inland water ecosystems, to be considered by CBD COP8 (through Recommendation VIII/2). This programme of work urges Parties to (among a range of actions) “…establish and maintain comprehensive, adequate and representative systems of protected inland water ecosystems with the framework of integrated catchment/watershed/river basin management.”

Acknowledging the strong linkages between human health and welfare, integrated lake/river basin management and freshwater protected areas, there is a need to work more closely with these sectors, notably organisations such as the World Health Organisation, FAO, UNIDA, development assistance agencies and others to gain their support.

The Linkages in the Landscape Stream of the Vth World Parks Congress has also noted that within an IRBM framework it is important to consider in particular protected areas within mountain regions to protect headwater integrity, and within forest ecosystems and agricultural landscape to minimise water pollution and land-based pollution of the coastal and marine environments.

The value of river basin management bodies, especially in the transboundary lake and river basin context, is acknowledged as a mechanism to see IRBM implemented.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Linkages in the Landscape/Seascape at the Vth World Parks Congress, in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September 2003):

NOTING that the World Parks Congress is being held in the International Year of Freshwater, 3rd World Water Forum,

1. CALL UPON governments, non-governmental organizations, the scientific community, private sector, local and indigenous communities and civil society to:

a. UNDERTAKE systematic assessments of the development benefits of freshwater protected areas, especially economic valuations, as justifications for greater commitment of resources to their maintenance and enhancement;
b. SUPPORT the establishment and implementation of IRBM in which networks of protected areas and regimes of protection are a key development strategy;
c. ADOPT the new proposed programme of work on inland water ecosystems under the CBD (as endorsed by the SBSTTA), and to vigorously pursue the goal of this new programme of work; “To establish and maintain comprehensive, adequate and representative systems of protected inland water ecosystems with the framework of integrated catchment/watershed/river basin management”;
d. Within IRBM frameworks, APPLY the ecosystem approach of the CBD, the principles of sustainability and equitable sharing of resources and the Comprehensive Options Assessment of the World Commission on Dams;
e. INCLUDE as part of IRBM-based protected area systems consideration of mountain, forest, agricultural, dry and sub-humid lands, inland water (including sub-surface waters) and coastal ecosystems, as defined under the CBD;
f. PURSUE actions to establish new, or more rigorously enforce existing, environmental policies that explicitly protect the ecological integrity of freshwater ecosystems, particularly the protected areas they contain;
g. REVIEW, within each country, and take the necessary steps to develop cohesion between conflicting economic, social and environmental policy instruments operating against or impeding the implementation of IRBM;
h. IMPLEMENT mechanisms to harmonise implementation of international environment conventions and associated national policy and strategies relating to biodiversity conservation and sustainable use of natural resources; and
i. GIVE PRIORITY to achieving the Ramsar Convention’s vision “To develop and maintain an international network of wetlands [inland water ecosystems] which are important for the conservation of global biological diversity and for sustaining human life through the ecological and hydrological functions they perform.” and the associated targets of reaching 250 million hectares and 2000 Ramsar sites by the end of 2010, and, also pursue the expansion of the network to include representative examples of all aquatic ecosystem types designated within the Ramsar strategic prioritization framework;
2. REQUEST the United Nations to extend the Year of Freshwater (2003) to a Decade of Freshwater, in recognition of the global water crisis, and for systematic protected area establishment to be a pillar of these global efforts;

3. URGE that where river basins or inland water ecosystems are shared between two or more countries, governments, non-governmental organizations, the private sector, local and indigenous communities and civil society;


a. Transboundary declarations of protected areas under an appropriate international instrument (World Heritage, Ramsar Convention, Man and the Biosphere etc);
b. Strengthening existing, or seek the establishment of lake or river basin management entities and strategies to promote the conservation of biological diversity and the peaceful and equitable sharing of water resources; and
c. Achievement of the target of IRBM operating within at least 50 international lake and river basins by 2010;
5. ENCOURAGE the protected area, biodiversity conservation and sustainable use multilateral environment agreements to continue, and intensify their current efforts to harmonise the development of approaches and tools to guide Parties with the development and maintenance of protected area systems, including the River Basin Initiative supported jointly by CBD and the Ramsar Convention;

6. CALL UPON IUCN working with governments, other non-governmental organizations, local and indigenous communities and civil society to ensure adequate representation of threatened species from the freshwater biome on the IUCN Red List;

7. URGE IUCN to:

a. Work with the Parties and Scientific and Technical Review Panel of the Ramsar Convention to promote application of the IUCN categories to the global network of over 1,300 freshwater and coastal Wetlands of International Importance, noting that this network, the world’s most extensive protected area systems, includes sites that cover all the IUCN categories; and
b. Foster collaborative approaches to the establishment and management of freshwater protected area with relevant global bodies across sectors such a human health, water supply and drainage, agriculture, hydro power, etc;
8. REQUEST that the WCPA report on progress with implementing this recommendation to the next Ramsar COP and VI World Parks Congress.

Recommendation 32
Strategic Agenda for Communication, Education and Public Awareness for Protected Areas

Protected area agencies are facing external pressures from many other sectors as nations develop their infrastructure, agriculture, urbanization, and industrialization processes. Integrating protected areas planning and biodiversity conservation issues into the agenda of other sectors is still a major weakness in most nations.

Communicating the benefits of protected areas and their relation to the development agenda has become essential for overcoming this weakness. Used in a strategic way, communication provides a tool for managers to increase their effectiveness, and improve visibility and reputation of protected areas. Communication should be used to share the perceptions and knowledge about conservation and protected areas among stakeholders.

Communication enhances a sense of ownership and commitment, thus adopting the most appropriate policies, instruments, means of management and conflict resolution strategies.

Communication (standing for communication, education, public awareness and interpretation) strategies need to be further developed by governments, institutions, and communities to gain wider support for protected areas.

Therefore, PARTICIPANTS in the Stream on Building Broader Support for Protected Areas at the Vth World Congress in Durban, South Africa (8-17 September, 2003):

1. RECOMMEND that governments, conservation agencies, inter-governmental organizations, NGOs, local communities, civil society, protected area managers, educational institutions and other interested parties work towards a common agenda for communication for protected areas at local, national, regional and global levels, capitalising on the instruments and institutional experience and capacity, to increase and build on the impact of the Durban Accord and Action Plan;

2. FURTHER RECOMMEND that governments, conservation agencies, inter-governmental organizations, NGOs, local communities, civil society, protected area managers, educational institutions and other interested parties:

a. INCORPORATE communication into the establishment of new protected areas and the management process of all PA from the beginning, especially in aspects related to policies and program implementation as a cross-cutting, multidisciplinary component;
b. INTEGRATE a multi-level (local, regional, national) communication strategy into all protected area management plans and practices;
c. ENSURE adequate funding for communication to be included in protected area budgets as well as agencies responsible for protected areas;
d. DEVELOP institutional capacity and professional skills for effective internal and external use of strategic communication by communication professionals, technical staff and stakeholders;
e. SUPPORT protected area agencies to become learning organisations that have the management capacity to deal with external developments in a resilient and flexible manner;
f. INCLUDE professional communicators as part of the management team and key actors from the beginning of policy, management planning, and programme and project development;
g. STRENGTHEN communication networks for knowledge exchange and professional development;
h. IMPROVE relations with other sectors, at national, regional and local levels to create both informal and formal channels for bringing protected area issues into the operations and thinking of those sectors;
i. DEVELOP a participatory approach to the public, communities that live in and around protected areas, visitors, and other stakeholders, empowering them to collaborate in PA management;
j. SUPPORT communication and media professionals and practitioners to better understand PA and their benefits by promoting field visits, training seminars and other learning mechanisms;
k. RECOGNISE that communication must be research-based, monitored for effectiveness, evaluated for impact and linked to PA objectives; and
l. USE communication tools to build the capacity of local communities to promote sustainable use of biodiversity in the context of PA.
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