UNESCO Global Geoparks

© Kevin Sharman
Hikers in Tumbler Ridge UNESCO Global Geopark, Canada

UNESCO Global Geoparks 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. Their bottom-up approach of combining conservation with sustainable development while involving local communities is becoming increasingly popular. At present, there are 147 UNESCO Global Geoparks in 41 countries. A webpage of each UNESCO Global Geopark is available, with detailed information on each site.

UNESCO’s work with geoparks began in 2001. In 2004, 17 European and 8 Chinese geoparks came together at UNESCO headquarters in Paris to form the Global Geoparks Network (GGN) where national geological heritage initiatives contribute to and benefit from their membership of a global network of exchange and cooperation.

On 17 November 2015, the 195 Member States of UNESCO ratified the creation of a new label, the UNESCO Global Geoparks, during the 38th General Conference of the Organisation. This expresses governmental recognition of the importance of managing outstanding geological sites and landscapes in a holistic manner.

The Organization supports Member States’ efforts to establish UNESCO Global Geoparks all around the world, in close collaboration with the Global Geoparks Network.

Top 10 Focus Areas of UNESCO Global Geoparks

UNESCO Global Geoparks inform people about the sustainable use and need for natural resources, whether they are mined, quarried or harnessed from the surrounding environment, while at the same time promoting respect for the environment and the integrity of the landscape. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Natural Resources

Many UNESCO Global Geoparks promote awareness of geological hazards, including volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, and many help prepare disaster mitigation strategies among local communities. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Geological Hazards

UNESCO Global Geoparks hold records of past climate change and are educators on current climate change as well as adopting a best practise approach to utilising renewable energy and employing the best standards of “green tourism.” More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Climate Change

It is a pre-requisite that all UNESCO Global Geoparks develop and operate educational activities for all ages to spread awareness of our geological heritage and its links to other aspects of our natural, cultural and intangible heritages. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Education

UNESCO Global Geoparks are encouraged to work with academic institutions to engage in active scientific research in the Earth Sciences, and other disciplines as appropriate, to advance our knowledge about the Earth and its processes. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Science

UNESCO Global Geoparks are fundamentally about people and about exploring and celebrating the links between our communities, our practices and the Earth. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Culture

UNESCO Global Geoparks have a strong emphasize on empowering women whether through focussed education programmes or through the development of women’s cooperatives. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Women

Even if an area has outstanding, world-famous geological heritage of outstanding universal value it cannot be a UNESCO Global Geopark unless the area also has a plan for the sustainable development of the people who live there. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Sustainable Development

UNESCO Global Geoparks actively involve local and indigenous peoples, preserving and celebrating their culture. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Local and indigenous Knowledge

UNESCO Global Geoparks are areas that use the concept of sustainability, value the heritage of Mother Earth and recognize the need to protect it. More on UNESCO Global Geoparks & Geoconservation

EGN Newsletters

Here you can read published newsletters on European Geoparks:: 

EGN Newsletter 1 EGN Newsletter 4 EGN Newsletter 7 EGN Newsletter 10 EGN newsletter 13
EGN Newsletter 2 EGN Newsletter 5 EGN Newsletter 8 EGN Newsletter 11
EGN Newsletter 3  EGN Newsletter 6 EGN Newsletter 9 EGN Newsletter 12



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