Iran seeks UNESCO beacon for gigantic geopark

TEHRAN – Iran recently submitted a complete dossier on its Tabas geopark to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization in hopes of obtaining UNESCO status for this gigantic landscape .

After four years of hard work and developing the necessary infrastructure, a comprehensive dossier on the Tabas Geopark was recently submitted to UNESCO for possible registration of the site, Mehr reported on Sunday.

UNESCO experts are expected to visit the geopark next summer to conduct field research, inspect and assess the landscape, which is located in east-central Iran, according to the report.

Located in South Khorasan Province, Tabas Geopark features 50 geo-sites, a variety of scenic landscapes and untouched terrain with the mysterious Kal-e Jeni (Jinn Canyon) located in Azmighan village. The first studies on the Geopark of Tabas began in 2011 with the mission of identifying its various sites and choosing names for them.

One of the highlights of the Geopark, Kale Jeni is still unexplored by many travelers and potential adventurers who may not even know that such a wonderful attraction exists on Earth!

A geopark is a unified area that advances the protection and use of geological heritage in a sustainable manner and promotes the economic well-being of the people who live there. A UNESCO definition of the Global Geopark is a unified area with a geological heritage of international importance. Geoparks use this heritage to promote awareness of key issues facing society in the context of our vibrant planet.

Experts believe the majority of geoparks help promote awareness of geological hazards, including volcanoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, and many help prepare disaster mitigation strategies with local communities. Geoparks embody records of past climate change and are also indicators of current climate change.

A UNESCO Global Geopark promotes culturally and environmentally sustainable socio-economic development, directly affecting the region by improving human living conditions and the rural environment. It gives local people a sense of pride for their region, strengthens the public’s identification with the region and promotes a better understanding of the geological, natural, archaeological, cultural and industrial heritage of the region.

According to the United Nations body, UNESCO’s global geoparks have multiple objectives, in particular the protection and conservation of its territorial geo-heritage and the sustainable cultural and environmental development of the region.

“UNESCO Global Geoparks are fundamentally about people and explore and celebrate the connections between our communities and the Earth. The Earth has shaped who we are: it has shaped our agricultural practices, the building materials and the methods we use for our homes, even our mythology, our folklore and our popular traditions. UNESCO Global Geoparks are therefore engaging in a range of activities to celebrate these links. Many UNESCO Global Geoparks have strong links with artistic communities where the synergy unleashed by bringing together science and the arts can yield surprising results.

In addition, one of the main objectives is to promote geoscience education among local communities and visitors by conveying the importance of geological heritage to students, teachers, local decision makers and the general public.


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