Meratus Geopark collaborating with stakeholders for Unesco Global Geopark tag - Tourism Indonesia


Tuesday, January 25, 2022

Meratus Geopark collaborating with stakeholders for Unesco Global Geopark tag

Meratus Geopark collaborating with stakeholders for UGG tag
Langara Hill in Loksado, South Hulu Sungai district, South Kalimantan is a part of the Meratus Geopark. (ANTARA PHOTO/Bayu Pratama)

South Kalimantan's Meratus Geopark Management Agency is collaborating with stakeholders for the development of the area as part of efforts to provide the benefits of the geopark to the local community, an official has said.

The Meratus Mountains were designated a national geopark in 2018, and the agency is preparing to get the area designated as a UNESCO Global Geopark (UGG) in 2022.

"Cooperation has been established with academia, business players, media, and the community," head of the geosites management unit at the Meratus Geopark, Ali Mustofa, said in Banjar district, South Kalimantan, on Thursday.

The government, academics, business entities, communities, and the media are interrelated parties in the system for geopark development, he told the Dangsanak Geopark Meratus community group.

Mustofa said the development of geoparks is aimed at conserving nature, educating people, and growing the local economy through geotourism and geoproducts.

Therefore, the involvement and empowerment of local communities, as well as partnerships are important for a geopark, he added.

He underlined the importance of the community's role in the development of the Meratus Geopark, especially to raise awareness among locals and support the management agency in conducting field evaluations.

"Without the help of this community, it is difficult for us to reach all communities around the Meratus Geopark area to educate them," Mustofa said.

The Dangsanak Geopark Meratus Community group is a non-profit organization whose members comprise environmental activists, mediapersons, students, businessmen, and community leaders who share a common concern for environmental conservation, especially in South Kalimantan.

The 200 million-year-old Meratus Mountains have a complex geological history.

South Kalimantan has 74 potential geosites spread over nine districts and cities, including Tabalong, Balangan, Hulu Sungai Tengah, Hulu Sungai Selatan, Tapin, Banjar, Kotabaru.

Several steps have been taken to achieve UGG status for the areas, including improving geosite facilities, improving access, and outreach to schools and tourism awareness groups. (Antara)

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