Ly Son geopark in central province seeks global status
Chairman of the UNESCO Global Geoparks Council Guy Martini has expressed his hope that the central province of Quang Ngai will submit the dossiers of the Ly Son geopark to the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to seek a global status next year.
A corner of Ly Son Island, Quang Ngai province
Speaking at a recent conference in the province, Martini, who is also General Secretary of the Global Geoparks Network, suggested Quang Ngai continue to train personnel for the management board of the park.
The conference looked into values of the Ly Son geopark and the project that aims to develop it into a global one.
Dr. Paul R. Dingwall, a member of the International Union for Conservation of Nature and a world heritage advisor to the UNESCO, said the Ly Son geopark has huge potential to win UNESCO recognition.
However, he said, more must be done to reach the goal, including studying and assessing its cultural and natural values, defining legal and administrative frameworks, as well as drafting management and consultation plans with relevant sides, especially local leaders and residents.
Vice Chairman of the provincial People's Committee Dang Ngoc Dung said the project is expected to create momentum for the local tourism and provide additional values to local products.
Since January, the park's management board has coordinated with the Viet Nam Institute of Geosciences and Mineral Resources to conduct many studies in order to assess the park's geological, geomorphological and cultural values as well as its biodiversity, the official said.
Under the project, the geopark will include 7,925ha of the Ly Son Marine Conservation site, 1,000ha of Ca Dam Nature Reserve and another 39,000ha of reserve in the west of Ba To district.
The area already boasts a number of historic landmarks, including ancient ports of Champa, Dai Viet (Great Viet) and Sa Huynh, and Son My vestige museum, Sa Huynh museum, and Truong Ly (Great Stone Wall) in Nghia Hanh district.
According to scientists, magma sample research and field examination showed the volcano erupted to create Quang Ngai sometime between 6.9 million and 9 million years ago.
Ly Son island witnessed at least three periods of volcanism with eruption areas from Ly Son to Phu Yen province and Phu Quy Island in Binh Thuan province.
Samples of metamorphic and igneous rocks found in Quang Ngai are believed to be formed from 250 million to 460 million years ago.
At least three complexes of metamorphic and igneous rock and 12 magma complexes helped create some areas in Quang Ngai (Ba To and Tra Bong districts).
Viet Nam is currently home to UNESCO-recognised Dong Van Karst Plateau Geopark in the northernmost province of Ha Giang and Non Nuoc Cao Bang Geopark in the northern province of Cao Bang.