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European Verification and Certification of Protected Areas under the IUCN Management Categories


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european verification and certification of protected areas under the iucn management categories
European Verification and Certification of Protected Areas under the IUCN Management Categories

Presentation of the results of the

WCPA Europe/IUCN Working Group for the Development of a Procedure for Verifying and Certifying the Status and Management of Protected Areas Based on the IUCN Management Categories

Presentation given by Andrej Sovinc

World Parks Congress, Durban, South Africa, September 2003.

background and purpose
Background and purpose
  • United Nations List of Protected Areas (UNEP–WCMC)
  • Guidelines for Protected Area Management Categories, IUCN/WCPA and WCMC (1994)
  • Interpretation and Application of the Protected Area Management Categories in Europe, EUROPARC Federation and IUCN (2000).
background and purpose1
Background and purpose
  • Governments: importance of PAs, developing systems of PAs;
  • Reducing the confusion to describe different kinds of PAs;
  • Providing international standards;
  • Improvement of PA management;
  • Data framework about PAs;
  • “common language; and
  • Benchmarking of PAs.
objectives of categorisation of pas
Objectives of categorisation of PAs
  • Governments: importance of PAs, developing systems of PAs;
  • Reducing the confusion to describe different kinds of PAs;
  • Providing international standards;
  • Improvement of PA management;
  • Data framework about PAs;
  • “common language; and
  • Benchmarking of PAs.
weaknesses in the process
Weaknesses in the process
  • no system of verification; and
  • no mandate given to IUCN and UNEP-WCMC

NOTE: it is about management category,

not management effectiveness!

benefits of verification and certification
Benefits of Verification and Certification
  • Quality database, improved knowledge on the extent of PAs;
  • IUCN PA classification system understood;
  • International pressure on the authorities;
  • Increased protection for PAs;
  • Upgrade management practices;
  • Promote and raise awareness for PAs;
  • Marketing based approach to PAs;
  • Give real publicity to IUCN and WCPA;
  • Assist in providing information for the UN List.
the major verification and certification elements
The Major Verification and Certification Elements

All categories must fall within the IUCN definition of PA

Verification of the relationship between management objectives and categories is based on:

  • categorisation;
  • legislation;
  • management plan;
  • zoning within protected areas;
  • the size of the protected area;
  • management responsibility;
  • ownership of land;
  • international designations.
procedure of verification and certification
Procedure of Verification and Certification

General regulations:

  • Regional Verification Committee, established by Regional WCPA/IUCN;
  • administrative and technical support;
  • Three steps (Verification Committee-proposal; Vice Chair of WCPA-approval and issued by IUCN);
  • Voluntary request of the applicant;
  • Validation of the certificate and procedure of renewal;
  • Verified PAs clearly indicated
the procedure
The procedure
  • Applicant and “data provider”;
  • UN List data used (or UN List data collection format);
  • “block categorisation”;
  • “Quick Classification Scan”;
  • Consensus between the applicant and IUCN;
  • Cases of disagreement.
other arrangements
Other arrangements
  • All costs met by the applicant (expert mission, WCPA advisory service, revised application);
  • Definition of an operation and communication;
  • Tranining.
financial and other implications
Financial and other implications
  • The costs (see above);
  • Costs agreed in advance; and
  • Certified PAs publicised (Lifeline Newsletter, WCPA web site).
related processes for protected area verification and certification
Related Processes for Protected Area Verification and Certification:

Evaluating Effectiveness:

A Framework for Assessing Management of Protected Areas, Marc Hockings with Sue Stolton and Nigel Dudley (July 2000)): a separate system of evaluating and monitoring the effectiveness of protected area management along the IUCN Protected Area Categories developed by IUCN WCPA; UNESCO WH: Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage; Council of Europe: European Diploma.WWF's Rapid Assessment and Prioritisation methodology; EUROPARC Federation: The European Charter for sustainable tourism in protected areas; PAN Parks Verification and Certification concept; Europarc Federation: "Basic standards for transboundary cooperation between European Protected Areas" .