Log in

You will be redirected to IUCN Accounts to input your credentials. After log in you will be redirected back to this site.

Rest assured your personal data resides with IUCN and IUCN only. For more information please review our Data policy.

WCC 2016 Res 026 - Progress Report

General information
IUCN Constituencies implementing this Resolution
IUCN Members: 
Ministry of Natural Resources ( MNR ) / China
Eco Foundation Global ( EFG ) / China
Nature Conservation Union of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea ( NCUK ) / Korea (DPRK)
Ministry of Land and Environment Protection ( MoLEP ) / Korea (DPRK)
Ministry of Environment, Republic of Korea / Korea (RK)
World Heritage Promotion Team of Korean Tidal Flats / Korea (RK)
Wetlands International / The Netherlands
BirdLife International / United Kingdom
International Crane Foundation, Inc. ( ICF ) / United States of America
IUCN Commissions: 
IUCN Secretariat: 
Other non-IUCN related organisations: 
East Asian-Australasian flyway partnership , Hanns Seidel Foundation, Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries of Korea, Ramsar Regional Center East Asia, Eco-Horizon Institute Korea
Indicate which actions have been carried out to implement this Resolution : 
Convene stakeholders/Networking
Education/Communication/Raising awareness
Field activities
Policy influencing/advocacy
Scientific/technical activities
Describe the results/achievements of the actions taken: 
1 - Yellow Sea Working Group: IUCN, in collaboration with the East Asian Australasian Flyway Partnership (EAAFP) and the Ramsar Regional Center-East Asia (RRC-EA), continued to facilitate the meetings of the Working Group on the Conservation of the Yellow Sea Intertidal and Associated Coastal Wetlands, or Yellow Sea Working Group (YSWG). The group organised two meetings this year, in March 2019 in Beijing and in December 2019 in Shinan, Republic of Korea (RoK), gathering government and NGOs representatives from the three countries of the Yellow Sea. These two meetings focused on developing a three-year workplan for the working group and identifying country nominations for the group. The YSWG is being consolidated and it aims to act as a cooperation and dialogue platform for the three countries on the sustainable management and conservation of intertidal and associated coastal wetlands of the Yellow Sea.
The group discussed a final workplan for the YSWG and IUCN, EAAFP and RRC-EA are now developing detailed descriptions and associated budgets for the activities.
IUCN signed a MoU with the Ministry of Ocean and Fisheries of the Republic of Korea (MOF) to, among other things, ensure the facilitation of the operation of YSWG and the implementation of its work plan, including strengthening the role of MOF in leading the RoK delegation at YSWG meetings;

2 - World Heritage nominations (and other designation) processes
In June, China's Migratory Bird Sanctuaries along the Coast of the Yellow Sea-Bohai Gulf (Phase I) were inscribed to the World Heritage List as a natural site at the 43rd session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Azerbaijan's capital of Baku. The two components of the property are both along the coast of the Yellow Sea:
1) YS1- the Jiangsu Dafeng National Nature Reserve, the southern section and Dongsha Experimental Zone of Jiangsu Yancheng National Nature Reserve and the Tiaozini area (totalling 173,110 ha, including a buffer zone of 28,271 ha). Despite being part of the Yancheng rare birds reserve, Tiaozini was included in a plan to reclaim wetlands put forward in 2011 by the Yancheng municipal government;
2) YS-2- the middle section of Jiangsu Yancheng National Nature Reserve (95,589 ha, including a buffer zone of 51,785 ha).
The total area of the two components is 188,643 ha plus a buffer zone of 80,056 ha. The flats host millions of migratory birds that winter there, including the critically endangered spoon-billed sandpiper.

The China National Forest and Grassland Administration (NFGA) held the 1st Working Group Meeting of the Leaders on the Nomination for World Heritage of “The Migratory Bird Sanctuaries along the Coast of the Yellow Sea-Bohai Gulf of China (Phase II).” On 25th January, 2019, NFGA organised the inaugural meeting and the first general assembly meeting of the Alliance of Migratory Bird Sanctuaries along the Coast of Yellow and Bohai Sea in Yancheng, Jiangsu Province. The Constitution of the Alliance of Migratory Bird Sanctuaries along the Coast of Yellow and Bohai Sea was adopted with the objective of establishing a cross-regional and inter-agency cooperation mechanism for the migratory bird sanctuaries along the coast of Yellow and Bohai Sea, and bring innovation to the coastal wetlands protection technology. The current government plan is to complete the application, as well as conservation and management plans for the 14 proposed sites for Phase II, by June 2021. It will be officially submitted by 31 January 2022, for inclusion in 2023. Yancheng is also applying for the “International Wetland City” nomination, under the framework of the Ramsar Convention.
In the Republic of Korea, the government submitted the Getbol, Korean Tidal Flat World Heritage Nomination dossiers to the World Heritage Center and facilitated an IUCN WH Field Mission. A public hearing was held along with meetings with local residents in Yubudo Island, one of the most important stopover sites on the East Asian-Australasian Flyway. A special lecture was delivered to local university students about the international value and importance of Yellow/West Sea Eco-region and justification of the Korean Tidal Flat inscription on the World Heritage List. The Shinan Aphae area was designated as EAAF site. The whole of Shinan Getbol Wetland Protected Area (110,086 ha) is under the process of being designated as a Ramsar site.

3 - International events and dialogues:
IUCN joined the 3rd Yellow Sea Large Marine Ecosystem (YSLME) Science Conference from 15-19 July in Qingdao, China. The conference showcased a plenary session, four parallel events focusing on fisheries, biodiversity, nutrients, and marine litter and microplastics in YSLME. An ad hoc meeting of the YSLME interim commission council was also conducted during the event. The conference closed with a group work on updating the YSLME Strategic Action Program (SAP), based on the inputs coming from the science conference. IUCN presented the achievements under Resolution 26, including the work of the YSWG during the parallel event on biodiversity and contributed to the discussion on the YSLME SAP.
Eco Foundation Global (EFG) jointly with Yancheng Municipality and partners held the 2019 Yellow & Bohai Sea Wetlands International Conference Yancheng City, Jiangsu Province, China, from September 28 to 30, 2019 with the theme “World Natural Heritage Conservation Management & Sustainable Development”. Following the successes of hosting the International Symposium on the Coastal Wetlands of Yellow (Bohai) Sea in Yancheng for two consecutive years in 2017 and 2018, the Yancheng Yellow Sea Wetland World Heritage Declaration has gathered a broad international consensus. Representatives from governments, as well as important international organizations, well-known research institutions, enterprises and other representatives from 22 countries, including more than 400 guests, attended the conference.
IUCN organised a side event at the Regional Conservation Forum in Pakistan in November on “The Mudflats of the Yellow Sea - A global heritage: Updates and progress with the implementation of WCC Resolution 26.” This event provided an opportunity for representatives from the three countries to give an update on activities related to Resolution 26 and to present key priorities for 2020. IUCN also submitted a proposal for a side event at WCC on the same topic, the event has been approved and a two-hour forum session will be held to discuss the way forward with Resolution 26. IUCN secured funding from the Ministry of Environment (MoE) Korea to support the side event.
On the 12th and 13th of November 2019, Shinan county government (RoK) organised the “Shinan International Symposium on Conservation Strategy for Migratory Birds and Their Habitats in the Yellow Sea” in Shinan hosted by Shinan County, MOF and MOE. IUCN, EAAFP, RRC-EA, the World Heritage Promotion Team of Korean Tidal Flat, and the Eco-Horizon Institute were co-organisers of the event. Approximately 150 participants attended the event including various international organizations and NGOs. The main objectives of the event were: 1. To promote international research exchange and cooperation for the protection of intertidal wetlands and migratory birds in the Yellow Sea; and 2. To establish and international network for sustainable conservation of intertidal wetlands in the Yellow Sea, a key habitat for migratory birds.

4 - Policy:
The government of China issued a new coastal policy, possibly the most ambitious coastal policy globally, which states that i) the government will nationalise reclaimed land with no structures built on it and will halt reclamation projects that have yet to be opened and are against national policies; ii) all structures built on illegally reclaimed land and that have seriously damaged the marine environment will be demolished iii) the central government will stop approving property development plans based on land reclamation and will prohibit all reclamation activities unless they pertain to national key infrastructure, public welfare or national defence iv) local authorities will no longer have the power to approve reclamation projects.
In RoK, MOF established the new Tidal Flat Act in 2019 to strengthen the protection and management of the Tidal Flat. The Act includes the establishment of a basic plan for comprehensive management for the Tidal Flat and their surrounding areas; the development of a new framework for the Management Restoration of Tidal Flat; the designation and management of Tidal Flat Management Area; the implementation of the restoration project; Promotion and certification of tidal flat-based eco-tourism. The Enforcement Ordinance of the Act stipulates the designation and presentation of clean mudflats, the size of the state-run mudflat restoration project, and the requirements for implementation of the tidal flat ecological explanation institutes. The Act will be enforced from 16 January 2020.

5 - Awareness/CEPA events:
In the DPRK, the first Swan Goose Festival was organized by the Ministry of Land and Environmental Protection (MoLEP) in Mundok Ramsar site on the Yellow (West) Sea. It was co-organized by EAAFP Secretariat, Hanns Seidel Foundation, WWF-Hong Kong and Hong Kong Bird Watching Society. A total of 160 participants including international participants, embassy representatives from Russia, Mongolia, and Syria as well as delegates of UN agencies, local government representatives, site managers, and local communities attended this first-ever event.
What challenges/obstacles have been encountered in the implementation of this Resolution and how were they overcome : 
Overall, the Resolution 26 continues to build strong momentum on the conservation of the intertidal wetlands of the Yellow Sea.

A large number of IUCN members proposed a revised motion, due to the fact that the political and cooperation context in the Yellow Sea has significantly evolved since 2016, and Resolution 26 is now being seen largely as implemented and if maintained, insufficiently ambitious, considering the recent opportunities. Unfortunately, and despite an appeal, the motion was rejected twice on the basis of being too redundant with Resolution 26. The approved WCC side event will focus on ensuring that the momentum on Resolution 26 is maintained, and sharing awareness on the fact that it remains active.

There have been a number of challenges related to the nomination of the WH site in China, which were overcome due to a large commitment and involvement of the international and national communities. The WH process is ongoing in Korea and the Phase 2 process for China is also starting. The lack of direct dialogue between the two governments on this theme is a significant gap. The YSWG and international platforms like the Yancheng Annual Symposium will provide additional efforts to enable this dialogue.

Briefly describe what future actions are needed for the implementation of this Resolution: 
One of the key priorities for the implementation of Resolution 26 in 2020 is to ensure that the WH nomination processes are undertaking the relevant steps in each country. In China this includes supporting consultation and dialogues that enable the development of a robust Phase 2 proposal. In Republic of Korea, the nomination process is ongoing, a regular monitoring is suitable to ensure all relevant steps are taken. Supporting bilateral government dialogues is also a priority to address one of the main gaps identified in the WH nomination process to date. In DPRK, trainings on WH were discussed with MoLEP.
EFG and Yancheng Municipality are currently preparing the Yancheng International Symposium on the Coastal Wetlands of Yellow (Bohai) Sea 2020. This event has become an annual milestone for the international community to meet and catalyse the work on the conservation of the tidal and intertidal wetlands of the Yellow Sea.
The fourth meeting of the YSWG is planned for March 2020 in Beijing, China and will validate the workplan and initiate the implementation of activities for 2020. A side event of the YSWG is also planned for WCC 2020 in Marseille, France. IUCN and partners are working to identify sustainable funding for the YSWG, including partnering with MoF Korea, MoE Korea and approaching NFGA, China.
Are these actions planned for yet: 
Status of implementation
Status of implementation for this Resolution: 
On-going: implementation consisting of repetitive, recurrent action (attending meetings, reporting, etc.)
Additional information