Geopark, A New Paradigm for Conservation

A “Geopark” is a relatively new designation in natural resource conservation arena with a holistic concept of protection, education and sustainable development launched by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1998 (Perez, 2004). To be a UNESCO Global Geopark, the area must contain internationally significant geological heritages. Geological heritage sites in the geopark are widely known as geosites. UNESCO Global Geoparks empower local communities and give them the opportunity to develop cohesive partnerships with the common goal of promoting the area’s significant geological processes, features, periods of time, historical themes linked to geology, or outstanding geological beauty.Until April, 2019, Presently, there are 147 Global UNESCO Geoparks in 41 countries in the world. There is not any officially designated geopark in the United States till date; however, there are two aspiring geo-parks in the country- Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula and West Virginia’s southern coalfields.

Objective of Study

  1. Data collection by triangulation method (Qualitative and quantitative)
  2. Data analysis
  3. Mapping significant places
  4. Preference rating on place