EGN Meeting and Conference – Sesia Val Grande Geopark, 26-30 September 2022
At the end of September, two representatives of Katla Geopark attended the 46th meeting of the European Geopark Network (EGN) and the 16th European Geopark Conference. The events were held at Sesia Valgrande Geopark in the town of Verbania on Lake Il Maggiore in Northern Italy. One of the main topics discussed during the EGN meeting was development of the new strategy for EGN and for each working groups and how their function could be improved. In addition, climate mitigation approaches from participants of the EGN were discussed, and as of next year, one of the two EGN meetings will be held online to limit carbon emissions related to travel abroad. At the conference, there were numerous interesting presentations, with two of the presentations coming from Katla Geopark.
Berglind Sigmundsdóttir, manager of Katla Geopark, gave a talk about a collaborative project related to food and traditions in Katla Geopark and interviews that the Geopark has been taking with residents related to it, and Sigurður Sigursveinsson gave a talk about another collaborative project, a program in development on geotourism at masters level at the University of Krakow in Poland, where Katla Geopark and Holy Cross Geopark are used as role models of areas with good infrastructure for supporting geotourism. Representatives from Reykjanes Geopark also took part in the EGN meeting and conference and introduced projects they are involved with. Þura, manager of Visit Reykjanes, gave a talk about Upcycling, a collaborative project that deals with the circular economy and recycling, and Arnbjörn, who sits on the board of Reykjanes Geopark, gave a talk about GeoCamp Iceland, and took examples from student visits to Katla Geopark, where the conditions seem to be exceptionally good for outdoor teaching and field work related to geomorphology.
The next meeting of the European Geopark Network will be held in Hateg Geopark in Romania at the end of March 2023, while the next conference will be organized by the Global Geopark Network (GGN) at the M'Goun Geopark in Morocco at the end of September 2023. Conferences organized by Geoparks are open to all. Attending is a great way to learn about Geoparks along with building your network by taking part with presentations of your affiliation to Geoparks and following activities; whether you work for a municipality, a company or are a student interested in Geoparks! If you would like to know more about the upcoming conferences and how to attend, we encourage you to contact us for more information. You can see photos from the conference here.