UNESCO approves the designation of 18 new geoparks to its World Network

▲ Ijen Geopark, home to the most acidic crater lake on Earth located in Indonesia.Unesco Global Geopark’s photo

Photo▲ Leang Salukang Kallang, an underground river in the Maros Pangkep Geopark, located in Indonesia.Unesco Global Geopark’s photo

Photo▲ Sanctuary of Poseidon, in the Lavreotiki Geopark, in GreeceUnesco Global Geopark’s photo

Photo▲ O Picón beach, in Cabo Ortegal, Spain.Unesco Global Geopark’s photo

From the editorial

Newspaper La Jornada
Thursday May 25, 2023, p. 8

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (Unesco) yesterday approved the designation of 18 new geoparks to its World Network in this area. In this way, the number of these geological zones cataloged as international importance amounts to 195, distributed in 48 countries, reported the international organization in a statement.

The Philippines and New Zealand are the new nations that joined this category that was created in 2015, which also includes Brazil, Spain, Greece, Indonesia, Iran, Japan, Malaysia, Norway, the Republic of Korea, Thailand, Great Britain and North Ireland.

The Caçapava and Quarta Colônia geoparks are places recognized by Unesco in Brazil. Its geological heritage, consisting of metals and sulphide marble, has been essential for the economic development of the region.indicates the communiqué released by said instance.

The Cabo Ortegal geopark, in Spain, allows visitors to travel to the interior of our planet to discover rocks that emerged from the depths of the Earth almost 400 million years ago. The copper exploited in the mines in this area originated as a result of intense thermal activity on the seabed, where volcanic vents (known as fumaroles) released high-temperature gases and minerals that subsequently cooled upon contact with the water.

On the island of Bohol, in the Philippines, is the first global geopark recognized by UNESCO. Its geological identity has been formed over 150 million years, as periods of tectonic turbulence have lifted it from the ocean depths.

The Danajon double barrier reef, on the northern coast, is the only one of its kind in Southeast Asia and one of the six double barrier reefs known to exist on our planet, so according to Unesco offers visitors the opportunity to discover 6,000 years of coral growth.

Famous for the abundance and variety of its mineralogical specimens, many of which were discovered for the first time in this territory, the Lavreotiki Geopark in Greece is known throughout the world for the silver that is extracted from its mixed mineral deposits. sulfides. The region, inhabited since ancient times due to its underground geological wealth, currently has 25,102 inhabitants.

Between the strait and the sea, in the Ijen Geopark in Indonesia, human migration and trade converge. Another of its peculiarities is that it is one of the most active volcanoes in a caldera system, inside and on the edge of which some 22 post-caldera volcanic cones have formed.

In that same Asian country, there are the Maros Pangkep, Merangin Jambi and Raja Ampat geoparks. The former is known both for its spectacular karst towers and for the Spermonde coral reef archipelago; the second houses the unique fossils of the flora de Jambithe only ones of their kind, which today are exposed to the elements, while the third includes four main islands and is distinguished by the presence of the oldest exposed rock group in that nation.

The Aras Geopark is located in Iran. Its most important geological element are the traces of the mass extinction that occurred 252 million years ago and that marks the limit between the Permian and the Triassic, one of the most important events in the history of the Earth.

Located in central Japan, the Hakusan Tedorigawa Geopark records approximately 300 million years of history. It contains rocks that were formed by the collision of continents, as well as strata containing dinosaur fossils that accumulated in rivers and lakes at a time when the country was attached to the Eurasian continent.

The Unesco World Geoparks Network is made up of 195 territories clearly definedwhich cover a total area of ​​486,709 square kilometres, equivalent to twice the size of the United Kingdom.

A geopark, according to the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), is a territory that has a series of relevant geological aspects because they are unique features in the world, which allow us to understand how the planet or a certain site has evolved through weather.

Unesco clarified that these regions are chosen through a bottom-up process, involving all relevant local and regional stakeholders and authorities in the area (for example, landowners, community groups, tourism promoters, indigenous peoples, and local organizations).

In 2017, the Mexican geoparks of Mixteca Alta and Comarca Minera, located in the states of Oaxaca and Hidalgo, respectively, were added to this network.

By Editor

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