Nearly half of all natural World Heritage sites are threatened by harmful industrial activities, according to a new WWF report. These sites provide vital services to people and the environment, but are at risk worldwide from activities including oil and gas exploration, mining and illegal logging.
In 2009, UNESCO placed the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System on the List of World Heritage in Danger. In recent years, the reef's ecosystems have been damaged by coastal construction, and oil concessions continue to pose a threat. Drilling for oil anywhere in Belize's waters would put the reef at risk, and should be banned.
This report commissioned by WWF and prepared by Dalberg Global Development Advisors shows that over half of the natural World Heritage sites face significant threats to their unique values, putting the livelihoods and well-being of people who depend on them at risk.
A set of facts from the Protecting People Through Nature report show important findings on the dangers facing natural World Heritage sites and the resulting risks to the people whose livelihoods and well-being are connected to these sites.
Our report Protecting People through Nature has received great global and local media coverage across the world, including countries in Africa, UK, Germany, US, Canada , China and numerous Spanish and French language media. Agencies such as Reuters, AFP and Xinhua have published great pieces and several WWF spokespersons have done TV interviews with BBC, Al Jazeera, France24 and SABC.