The World Heritage Committee, during the 37th annual session held in Phnom Penh, Cambodia (16 - 27 June 2013) decided to register the natural property “Mount Etna” in the World Heritage List (Decision 37 COM 8B.15). The UNESCO registered property includes the most strictly protected and scientifically important area of Mount Etna and is part of the Etna Regional Natural Park.
Geographic coordinates: N37 ° 45 '00 E15 ° 00' 00
Criteria for the assessment of Outstanding Universal Value
The property was inscribed on the basis of criterion VIII concerning natural properties: to be outstanding examples representing major stages of earth’s history, including the record of life, significant on-going geological processes in the development of landforms, or significant geomorphic or physiographic features.
“Etna is one of the most active and celebrated volcanoes in the world, and an outstanding example of ongoing geological processes and volcanic formations. The stratovolcano is characterized by an almost continuous eruptive activity from its summit craters and quite frequent lava flow eruptions from the craters and cracks on its flanks. This exceptional volcanic activity has been documented by humans for at least 2700 years – making it one of the longest documented testimonies to the world of historical volcanism. The diverse and accessible range of volcanic features, such as summit craters, cinder cones, lava flows, lava caves and the Valle de Bove depression have made Mount Etna a privileged destination for research and education.”
Declaration of Outstanding Universal Value
“The World Heritage Property called Mount Etna (19.237 ha) includes the most highly protected and scientifically important area of Mount Etna and is part of the Parco Naturale Regionale Parco dell’Etna. Mount Etna is renowned for its exceptional level of volcanic activity and for the documentation of its activity for over 2700 years. Its fame, scientific importance and cultural and educational value are of global importance”.
Reference website: http://www.parcoetna.it/