“During the 13th European Geoparks Conference in Finland (Sept. 3-6), Qeshm Geopark was supported by the summit’s leading participants, including Margaret Patzak (of UNESCO’s Division of Ecological and Earth Sciences),” said Hamidreza Mohsenpour, according to the Persian travel news website Donyaye Safar.
He said Finland, Norway, Iceland and Portugal expressed their readiness to help Iran’s only geopark meet UNESCO’s criteria to reenter the list. In 2013, Qeshm Geopark was dropped from the list due to problems that have remained unresolved for too long.
Geoparks have significant scientific and geological value, apart from being a natural and cultural heritage. The Global Geopark Network, established by UNESCO, not only registers such parks but also pursues three other objectives: geopark protection, spreading awareness and setting standards for green tourism.
To comply with UNESCO’s standards, a geopark must have appropriate infrastructure and adequate accommodations for tourists, in line with the environmental standards for protecting the natural landscape.