Russia, Pribaikalsky National Park, August, 15-19, 2005
Organized by: Natural Heritage Protection Fund, Pribaikalsky National Park.
With the support of: Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (Germany), Geographic Institute of Siberian Brunch of Russian Academy of Science, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Moscow State University, Russian Scientific Research Institute of Cultural and Natural Heritage, Greenpeace Russia, IUCN.
More than 30 representatives of Russian and international agencies working in the field of the UNESCO Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage attended the seminar. Among them are managers of Specially Protected Areas (SPAs), included into the UNESCO World Heritage List, delegates from scientific and public organizations, administration of the Irkutsk Region.
Presentations have been made:
- The World Natural Heritage (WNH) - general overview.
- Implementation of Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage in Russia.
- Relationship between tourism development and sustainable development and conservation of the World Natural Heritage Sites.
- Ecological tourism in World Natural Heritage sites.
- Tracks in Specially Protected Areas around Lake Baikal - civilized access to the World Heritage site.
- Environmental education and ecological tourism.
- Benefits from the World Heritage status: ideas and proposals. Part 1: Conservation and sustanable development of Natural Heritage sites.
- Alternative nature use activities in the territories of the World Natural Heritage sites: extracts from world experience.
- Management of SPAs, composing the Lake Baikal World Heritage site.
- Sustainable livelihood of population of the World Natural Heritage sites.
- To the preliminary decision on commodity and service production in the erritories of SPAs: pilot analisys of current situation.
- Benefits from the World Heritage status: ideas and proposals. Part 2. World Natural Heritage properties as platforms for regional economic development.
- Work with foundations.
- Non-traditional nature use: revival of folk crafts.
- The Uvs-Nuur Hollow Biosphere Reserve - international World Natural Heritage Property.
- Foreign analogues of the Russian World Natural Heritage sites.
- Perspectives for further nominating of Russian natural sites.
Working lines of the seminar:
- World Natural Heritage properties as platforms for regional economic development.
- Development of ecological tourism and sustainable development of the World Natural Heritage Sites.
The seminar resulted in the following proposals:
Subject 1. Russian Natural Heritage Sites as platforms for regional economic development.
Solutions and activities proposed:
- Establishment of coordinating committees of Natural Heritage sites (that is especially important for properties, consisting of several SPAs with different protective status) to organize and coordinate implementation of the Convention requirements. Establishment in the future (on the basis of coordinating committees) of Association of the Russian World Natural Heritage sites;
- Elaboration of searching strategy for sources of alternative financial assistance to the World Natural Heritage sites;
- Involving of regional business and administration in solving of problems of the World Natural Heritage properties;
- Support of small-scaled business (with the assistance of State Reserves and National Parks); application of low-cost job growth and wage-push mechanisms to environmentally appropriate production;
- Development of sustainable livelihood programs for population of the World Natural Heritage sites and zones of their influence;
- Initialization of an official request from the UNESCO National Commission to the World Heritage Centre concerning existing tourism development programs in World Heritage sites;
- Contacts with agencies and organizations - members of the World Heritage Centre Partnership Program;
- Submit to Federal Nature Management Inspectorate (Rosprirodnadzor) a proposal to delegate the authority of off-budget approval (entrance fee, rental payment to the budget of SPAs, etc.) to managers of SPAs. Petition for simplification of parcellation for rent procedure to attract investments in SPAs development;
- Preparation of a request for financial assistance to the World Heritage Fund concerning equipping of the World Natural Heritage sites with informational boards/panels to notify visitors and local people about the Convention and the site's details;
- For the Russian World Natural Heritage sites: to make a choice of and establish relations with foreign twin-sites (exchange programs, joint projects, mutual solution of similar problems, etc.);
- Providing of informational support to the World Natural Heritage territories:
- Preparation of a pilot publishing project - informational bulletin "World Natural Heritage in Russia". Translation and circulation of the World Heritage written materials;
- Promotion of the "World Heritage Information Kit" Russian version;
- Publication of series of articles devoted to the Russian World Natural Heritagein the key Russian popular scientific periodicals;
- Design of the World Natural Heritage sites web pages;
- Publication of materials of the 2005 seminar in the autumn issue of RCN, devoted to Russian World Natural Heritage problems.
- Organization of the next training seminar for managers of the Russian World Natural Heritage sites dedicated to aspects of work with local population. The next seminar is planned in summer, 2006, at Kamchatka.
Subject 2: Development of ecotourism and sustainable development of Natural Heritage Protection Sites.
Solutions and activities proposed:
- Development of regional ecotourism development programs for the World Natural Heritage sites;
- Better cooperation in the field of ecotourism development between SPAs, NGOs and the World Heritage Centre;
- Spreading of information about the Russian World Natural Heritage sitesto the Russian and foreign travel agencies;
- Working out of recommendations for trailing and equipping of ecological tracks (CD series);
- Spreading of example of the Great Baikal Track;
- Providing visitors with proper ecological information (visit-centers, informational panels, posters, banners, etc.);
- Sharing of ecotourism development experience of foreign World Natural Heritage sites. Promoting of new forms of ecological tourism: agrotourism, ecological and cultural tourism, etc.
The participants expressed their protest against the Transneft' oil pipeline laying-out within the boundaries of the Baikal Lake Natural Heritage site.