Nature & Parks

[Preface] Yakushima World Heritage Area Management Plan

[Cultural and Historical Heritage] Yakushima World Heritage Area Management Plan


The Yakushima World Heritage Area ("Heritage Area") contains Yakusugi trees (Cryptmeria japonica) that are thousands of years old and unique in the world, as well as many plants and animals which are unique to the area and/or endangered. The Heritage Area also contains a wide representation of species distributed vertically ,i.e., from species seen on the coastal regions to those only seen in subalpine regions. Therefore, this region contains a unique ecosystem and extraordinary natural scenery. Based on the terms of the World Heritage Convention, the area was deemed, "an outstanding example of communities of plants and animals representing significant on-going ecological and biological processes in the evolution and development of terrestrial, fresh water, coastal and marine ecosystems," It was also deemed to "contain superlative natural phenomenon or areas of exceptional natural beauty and aesthetic importance," and was added to the World Heritage List in December l993. The process of this inclusion in the World Heritage List was as follows. The World Heritage Committee Bureau Session, encouraged, the Japanese Government to prepare a management plan that considered the high numbers of visitors and that established a coordinated system of the management for the Heritage Area. This management plan was formulated followed. In the course of the formulation of this plan, an outline of the draft management plan was publicized in October 1995 and the final plan was formulated after considering opinions expressed through a public meeting and letters.

Ministry of the Environment Government of Japan

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