UNESCO to formally add Mt Fuji as World Heritage site this week


The World Heritage Committee of UNESCO began a weeklong meeting in Cambodia on Sunday, during which Mount Fuji will be formally added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites.

The International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), a consultative body to UNESCO, in April recommended that Mt Fuji, the highest mountain in Japan at 3,776 meters, was appropriate for registering as a World Heritage site.

Mt Fuji covers roughly 70,000 hectares in Yamanashi and Shizuoka prefectures, including five major lakes and the Shiraito Falls, as well as eight Shinto shrines. It is being considered as a "cultural" heritage site, rather than a "natural" heritage site.

UNESCO's World Heritage program is governed by an international treaty intended to "encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity," its mission statement says.

Other World Heritage cultural sites include the Sydney Opera House, the temples at Angkor in Cambodia, The Great Wall of China and the pyramid fields in Egypt.

Japan's Agency for Cultural Affairs last year also proposed that the collection of cultural assets at Kamakura be awarded World Heritage Site status, but the UNESCO panel turned the request down.

© Japan Today/AFP

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Well now that it's going to be a WHS I hope they get it cleaned up and that climbers start to take better care when they climb it!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I guess this means they will charge to go near it, I hope the money goes toward the management and care or to help the whaling.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

guess a hike will be 7000 yen next time lets see if there will be any difference to the mountain rather than a charge in the future

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Do I sense a paradox here? the status cites "protection," "preservation," blah, blah, But in Japan that status invariably means vast hordes of tourists, turning a once-natural spot into Shinjuku Station at rushhour.

In Shiretoko, Hokkaido, the trail was backed up several kilometers of "hikers" just like the Tomei Expressway at U-turn time. The scene was farcical when I saw it on the TV news. Cheek-to-jowl hikers moving...nowhere.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

If these guys keep at it the entire planet is going to be a World Heritage Site.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

Why is Mt. Fuji "being considered as a 'cultural' heritage site, rather than a “natural” heritage site"? Doesn't "cultural" indicate some kind of human-made aspect. I think of Mt. Fuji as a natural phenomenon, not as much a cultural phenomenon.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

.....the tourists' exodus has started!!!expect crowd crazy most of the time from now on...omg!!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Now they have added Mt Fuji, I wonder when they are going to add Henoko in Okinawa to the list of World Heritage Sites.

It has several endangered species, including the Yanbaru Cuina and Okinawan Dugong.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

By recognizing Fuji as a 'cultural' rather than a 'natural' heritage site, a clear statement has been made. In the eyes of its beholders, Japan's natural beauty has largely become a relic of the past.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

I am happy for Japan here, but I thought the shrines and temples of Kamakura would have been a better addition to Japans cultural heritage inscriptions (as things currently stand).

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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