Launch of Marine World Heritage App will bring marine crown jewels a lot closer

08 June 2012 | News story

In celebration of World Oceans Day, the IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre are launching a new iPhone application. This year’s Oceans Day theme “Youth: the Next Wave for Change” inspired the development of the mobile application, which will act as a window on marine world heritage sites around the world.

Of all 6,000 marine protected areas on the planet, only 45 have the highest internationally recognized status for conservation, World Heritage. The application aims at increasing visibility of these exceptional places and facilitating access to information about their outstanding value.

“Protecting our 45 marine World Heritage sites takes more than just good management—it is also about people, their awareness, and how they can help care for the ocean and push for greater protection for the blue heart of the planet,” says Dan Laffoley, Marine Vice Chair of IUCN’s World Commission on Protected Areas. “Through this app, we are delighted to be working with UNESCO’s World Heritage Center to take a revolutionary step forward in connecting individuals directly to the ocean.”

IUCN has a long-standing partnership with UNESCO’s World Heritage Convention, which remains a powerful tool to protect these precious places and has known fascinating successes in many of them over the past 40 years. With this iPhone application it becomes possible to have all information about them at hand. The iPhone application allows viewing videos of these exceptional places and their managers and consulting decisions the World Heritage Committee takes about the status of their conservation.

The application can be downloaded for free from the app store and will soon also be available for android compatible devices. The work has been made possible by the generous ongoing support of the Tides of Time partners Jaeger Le Coultre and International Herald Tribune and the government of Flanders.

Contacts:
Dan Laffoley, Vice Chair – Marine, IUCN World Commission on Protected Areas
danlaffoley@btinternet.com
For more information on IUCN’s Global Marine Programme, please consult: www.iucn.org/marine

Ms Fanny Douvere, Coordinator, Marine Programme, UNESCO’s World Heritage Center
f.douvere@unesco.org
For more information on UNESCO’s Marine World Heritage programme, please consult: http://whc.unesco.org/en/marine-programme