Labuan recognised as national geopark
IPOH,. Labuan and Lenggong, Perak have been recognised as the new national geoparks after the Kinta Valley National Geopark, Perak; Jerai National Geopark, Kedah and Kinabalu National Geopark, Sabah.
Energy and Natural Resources Minister Datuk Seri Takiyuddin Hassan said the recognition was given under the National Geopark Development Programme led by the federal government through the ministry.
“The recognition of Lenggong and Labuan as national geoparks was made on Dec 16 during the National Geopark Committee Meeting No. 1 of 2021,” he said in a statement here on Tuesday.
He said the Lenggong National Geopark over a 2,068 square kilometres (km2) area which is rich in unique rock landscapes, biological heritage (eight bio sites) and cultural heritage (19 cultural sites) is also stored with various histories of geological formations, especially those of international standard.
Prior to this, nine geoarchaeological sites in Lenggong had also received the World Heritage Site status from the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO), he added.
Takiyuddin said the Labuan National Geopark with an area of 402 km2 displayed the evolution of sedimentary rocks and landscapes that formed Labuan Island as well as biological sites.
“Among them are mangrove forest (Kinabenuwa), coastal forest (Tanjung Kubong), wildlife sanctuary (Pulau Ular) and marine parks (Pulau Rusukan Besar, Pulau Rusukan Kecil and Pulau Kuraman) which are the habitats for various bird species (swiftlets, Pacific Reef-egret, Anhinga and Crimson Sunbird).
“While the diversity of cultural heritage can be seen in the community that lives in water villages,” he said.
Elaborating, Takiyuddin said the recognition of Lenggong and Labuan as national geoparks was a significant achievement for the country, especially the state government and local authorities in conserving nature and sustainable management of geosites of extraordinary values, in line with the National Development Agenda and the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
“The ministry believes that close cooperation with the state government can ensure that these national geoparks will be well-managed.
“In addition, efforts to improve the socio-economic status of the local community, especially in areas within the national geopark region can be implemented more effectively through their involvement in various geopark development activities and programmes,” he said.