BANJARMASIN, South Kalimantan (ANTARA) – The Meratus Geopark Management Agency (BP Geopark Meratus) has prepared a proposal file for 11 world-class geosites and 22 local geosites for submission for the Meratus Mountains designated as a UNESCO Global Geopark (UGG). must.
“We are currently refining the proposal file which contains evidence that Meratus Geopark deserves to be a UGG,” BP Geopark Meratus Deputy Chairman Nurul Fajar Desira said on Friday in Banjarbaru.
Desira said the managing authority has prepared the files for 11 world-class geosites and 22 local geosites, which also cover the potential of culture, flora and fauna, and culinary arts.
“In our concrete actions, we have prepared access to locations, information boards, directions and the management of the geopark by community groups. They too must understand the geological history here,” he stressed.
Therefore, he said, the agency coordinated with relevant institutions to educate the public.
Desira noted that the tourism bureau conducted training for tourism awareness groups (Pokdarwis) on the geological history and management of the geopark, while the education bureau shared geopark-related information with school children.
The Office for Communications and Informatics prepares grants, the Office for Civil Engineering works on facilities and physical infrastructure, the Office for Cooperatives and SMEs prepares geo-products, while the Office for Forestry deals with sustainable waste management.
“We need to prove that designating (the Meratus Mountains) as a geopark benefits the local community,” he explained, adding that the concept of the geopark is sustainable development that includes conservation, education and well-being of the surrounding community.
South Kalimantan Provincial Government is also preparing tour packages in Sultan Adam Forest Park (Tahura) area, Mandiangin, Banjar District.
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The proposal will be submitted to UNESCO in November. After that, in February 2023, UNESCO will provide its response, and in May, the world organization’s assessment team will visit the province to inspect the site.
Earlier, in late August, the Indonesia Geoparks National Committee team had identified two national geoparks – Karangsambung – Karangbolong Geopark and Meratus Geopark – as candidates for “emerging UGGp”.
The two geoparks are then recommended to UNESCO for UNESCO Global Geopark status.
Almost 200 million years old, the Meratus Mountains have a complex geological history. This area was designated as a national geopark in 2018.
South Kalimantan has 74 potential geosites in nine districts and cities including Tabalong, Balangan, Hulu Sungai Tengah, Hulu Sungai Selatan, Tapin, Banjar and Kotabaru.
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