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UNESCO Global Geoparks

UNESCO Global Geoparks

Context:

Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) has taken various initiatives for the protection of various sites in Visakhapatnam.

Details:

  • The geopark consisting of Erra Matti Dibbalu (red sand dunes), natural rock formations at Mangamaripeta, million-year-old Borra Caves, and volcanic ash deposits.
  • Among the 34 notified National Geological Heritage Monument Sites of India by the Geological Survey of India, is the Erra Matti Dibbalu or coastal red sediment mounds located between Visakhapatnam and Bheemunipatnam.
  • In 2019, INTACH organized a campaign along with the Department of Tourism, Archaeology, and Visakhapatnam Metropolitan Region Development Authority to create public awareness on geo heritage spots in the region.

UNESCO Global Geoparks

  • A UNESCO Global Geopark is given this designation for a period of four years after which the functioning and quality of each UNESCO Global Geoparks are thoroughly re-examined during a revalidation process.
  • These are single, unified geographical areas where sites and landscapes of international geological significance are managed with a holistic concept of protection, education, and sustainable development.
  • It uses its geological heritage, in connection with all other aspects of the area’s natural and cultural heritage, to enhance awareness and understanding of key issues.
  • UNESCO Global Geopark status does not imply restrictions on any economic activity inside a UNESCO Global Geopark where that activity complies with indigenous, local, regional, and/or national legislation.

Significance:

  • UNESCO Global Geoparks are established through a bottom-up process involving all relevant local and regional stakeholders and authorities in the area.
  • These Geoparks give local people a sense of pride in their region and strengthen their identification with the area.
  • The creation of innovative local enterprises, new jobs, and high-quality training courses is stimulated as new sources of revenue are generated through sustainable geo-tourism.

Global Geoparks Network (GGN):

  • It is a legally constituted not-for-profit organization founded in 2004.
  • The membership of GGN is obligatory for UNESCO Global Geoparks.
  • It is a dynamic network where members are committed to work together, exchange ideas of best practices, and join in common projects to raise the quality standards of all products and practices of a UNESCO Global Geopark.

Source: The Hindu