Three Japanese sites added to UNESCO global geoparks list


The other geoparks (nature parks with particular importance in terms of geological features) are Itoi river in Niigata Prefecture and Shimabara Peninsula in Nagasaki Prefecture.

Geoparks are nationally protected parks considered to be Earth heritage sites that need to be conserved. The Paris-based Global Geoparks Network, established in 2004 under the sponsorship of the UNESCO, designates the sites.

The three sites were recognized at the GGN's recent meeting held in China, its Japanese branch said.

Along with the Japanese sites, the GGN also recognized two parks in China, bringing the global list of geoparks to 63 in 19 countries.

Lake Toya's designation as a geopark includes adjacent Mt Usu, which has erupted four times in the past 100 years. A Group of Eight summit was held in the Lake Toya resort area in 2008.

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