Parks Canada

Parks Canada

October 20, 2005 14:20 ET

Parks Canada: Canada Elected to UNESCO World Heritage Committee

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Oct. 20, 2005) - The Honourable Stephane Dion, Minister of the Environment and Minister responsible for Parks Canada, today expressed Canada's pride following its recent election to UNESCO 's World Heritage Committee.

"Canada's election to the committee recognizes our expertise and leadership in protecting our nation's natural and cultural heritage, as well as our global leadership in the implementation of the World Heritage Convention," said Minister Dion. "The election results are a tribute to the professionalism that Canada has brought to world heritage matters since the convention was established in 1972."

The World Heritage Committee is responsible for the implementation of UNESCO's World Heritage Convention. It decides which heritage sites are inscribed on the World Heritage List, reviews the state of conservation of existing sites, allocates international aid through the World Heritage Fund, and on occasion requests that participating countries take action to enhance the protection and management of threatened World Heritage Sites.

Canada was elected to the World Heritage Committee in first place on the first ballot during UNESCO's Annual General Conference in Paris, receiving the support of 103 countries. It currently has 13 World Heritage Sites, and in 2004 prepared its Tentative List for World Heritage Sites which includes 11 additional potential sites for future nomination.

"With Canada's election, we are in a position to formally invite the World Heritage Committee to hold its 2008 meeting in Quebec during the city's 400th anniversary year," said Minister Dion. "Hosting the meeting would give us a unique opportunity to showcase internationally one of our most historic cities, along with Canada's other World Heritage Sites and our wonderful systems of national parks and national historic sites. It would put our nation's natural and cultural heritage places - and our commitment to protect them for future generations - in the world spotlight."

The Historic District of Quebec was inscribed as a World Heritage Site in 1985, and the Fortifications of Quebec were designated as a national historic site of Canada in 1957.

(Also available on the Internet at www.pc.gc.ca under What's new.)

Contact Information

  • Office of the Minister of the Environment
    Brigitte Caron
    Press Secretary
    (819) 997-1441
    or
    Parks Canada
    Josianne Jalbert
    Media Relations Officer
    (819) 994-3023