ZIGONG UNESCO GLOBAL GEOPARK – CHINA
Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark lies in Zigong City, Sichuan Province, China, in the Asia-Pacific region. Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark belongs to the Ziliujing Depression of the Sichuan syncline on the Yangtze Platform. It connects with the southern margin of the Weiyuan-Longnvsi uplift in the north, the southern Sichuan lower folded zone in the southeast and the Liangshan folded zone in the southwest.
The geoheritage in Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark is dominated by the extremely abundant dinosaur fossils and other vertebrate fossils, a typical Jurassic section and natural and cultural heritage related to salt production. Most of this geoheritage is of national and international significance for scientific research. The widely distributed Jurassic terrestrial strata in the UNESCO Global Geopark yield a great amount of dinosaur and other vertebrate fossils, commonly forming large-scale taphonomic assemblages. Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark is rich in salt mines, with a production history of about two thousand years. A variety of the salt industry remains have been well preserved.
The main protected objects of Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark are the Dashanpu Dinosaur Fossil Fauna, the salt well geology and remnants of the related industry, as well as the other precious natural resources and cultural and historic relics. During the history of the salt well industry, the people of Zigong created ten important innovations, which are of great value for salt exploration, drilling technology, salt mine formation and distribution.
The UNESCO Global Geopark has three museums: the Dinosaur Museum, the Salt Industry History Museum and the Chinese Lantern Museum. The Geopark has also signed an agreement with local schools to set up a “Geoscientific Popularization Education Center”. The UNESCO Global Geopark has organized a variety of science popularization activities with 200,000 participants. Since Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark attained global status, it has set up its own management organization, finished the general management plan (2010-2020) and taken various protection measures for different types of geoheritage, which provide a legal framework and helps the further development of the UNESCO Global Geopark. Since 2008, local tourism has increased rapidly and the GDP continues to grow. The UNESCO Global Geopark has stimulated the optimization and improvement of the local industry structure, and realized a rapid increase in its economic, environmental and social benefits, while at the same time strongly promoting social and economic development.
The Zigong UNESCO Global Geopark of China and Lesvos Global Geopark of Greece signed a partnership agreement at 25 September 2017.