In response to the US’s announced withdrawal from UNESCO, and recent information that the Trump administration is radically reducing US engagement in World Heritage matters, including by the NPS & State Department, US/ICOMOS has produced a resolution urging the US to maintain full engagement in the World Heritage Convention:
Resolution on the Engagement by the United States in the World Heritage Program
The United States National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (US/ICOMOS), the first and oldest of the 110 ICOMOS national committees, established in 1965,
Recognizing that the United States proposed the World Heritage Convention to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1972 and the United States was the first country to ratify the Convention in 1973;
Recalling that in 1978 the United States hosted the second session of the World Heritage Committee and two of the first 12 sites inscribed on the World Heritage List were Yellowstone National Park and Mesa Verde National Park;
Recognizing that increasing numbers of communities and site stewards throughout the United States continue to pursue and make progress with the Department of the Interior on the World Heritage Tentative List and nominations to the World Heritage List;
Recalling that the World Heritage Program builds mutual respect for the cultural and natural heritage and peaceful coexistence of all humanity;
Acknowledging that there are substantial social, cultural and economic benefits to communities and sites in the United States and worldwide that result from inclusion in the World Heritage List;
Recalling the partnership activities to support the World Heritage Program in the United States in which US/ICOMOS has closely collaborated with the National Park Service, including most recently the Frank Lloyd Wright World Heritage nomination midstream assistance, and the World Heritage Gap Study Report;
Believes it is of critical importance for the United States to remain robustly engaged in and supportive of the World Heritage Program;
Commits to continue to strongly support such efforts through its resources, including its members, programs, activities, investments and actions of this Board;
Urges the President and Congress of the United States, through the United States Departments of the Interior and State, to remain robustly engaged in, and supportive of, the World Heritage Program and to provide funds to both support World Heritage nominations of sites in the United States and contribute payments to the World Heritage Fund in order to demonstrate leadership in, and support for, the important work of ensuring global peace through the mutual respect of heritage of outstanding universal value.
US/ICOMOS national preservation partners AAA, SAA & SHA have joined as co-signers.