Eight New Natural Wonders were recently named by United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). These include the following, newly added to the World Heritage List:
- Joggins Fossil Cliffs (Canada)
- Mount Sanqingshan National Park (China)
- Lagoons of New Caledonia: Reef Diversity and Associated Ecosystems (France)
- Surtsey (Iceland)
- Saryarka – Steppe and Lakes of Northern Kazakhstan (Kazakhstan)
- Monarch Butterfly Biosphere Reserve (Mexico)
- Swiss Tectonic Arena Sardona (Switzerland)
- Socotra Archipelago (Yemen)
David Sheppard, head of the IUCN’s Protected Areas Program, recommended these sites and have said that “These eight stunning natural sites are amongst the best of what nature has to offer.”
These sites are now being monitored for conservation by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN). They are accompanied by 27 cultural sites as inductees to the World Heritage Program.
The IUCN also helps monitor conservation at the natural sites. It has deemed several World Heritage sites as under threat, including the Galápagos Islands, in Ecuador, Machu Picchu, in Peru, and Virunga National Park, in the Democratic Republic of Congo.