By: Rosli Mansor
Ipoh– Dato’ Saarani Mohamad, the Menteri Besar of Perak, has called upon the public to collectively preserve and enhance the sustainability of Geopark Lembah Kinta, to achieve UNESCO Global Geopark status.
He emphasized that the recognition of Lembah Kinta as a National Geopark holds immense significance due to its unique qualities.
“Each one of us should bear the responsibility of safeguarding and conserving our geological heritage, natural resources, as well as our cultural and historical heritage.
“Many of the limestone hills situated in Ipoh indirectly make it the only city located within a geopark, becoming a geo-tourism route for both local and international tourists.
“The Lembah Kinta region, known for its tin mining heritage, boasts a variety of unique natural landscapes and possesses geological and scientific historical value.
For instance, Gunung Lang Recreational Park stands as one of the five most popular recreational parks in Malaysia,” he said during his address at the 5th Anniversary Celebration of Geopark Lembah Kinta and the launch of the International Geopark Run 2024 @ Ipoh Low Carbon Day held at Dataran Bandaraya, Ipoh today.
Also in attendance were DYTM Raja Muda Perak, Raja Jaafar Raja Muda Musa and DYAM Raja Dihilir Perak, Raja Iskandar Dzurkarnain Sultan Idris Afifullah Shah.
Geopark Lembah Kinta, recognized as a National Geopark since 2017, lists 22 geosites, eight biodiversity sites, 11 heritage and historical sites, and seven geo products.
Lembah Kinta was re-evaluated by the Geopark Implementation Committee in 2022 and was once again reaffirmed as a National Geopark for a four-year term extending until 2025.
He further explained that the development concept of a geopark encompasses three elements: education, conservation, and sustainable development, ensuring that the geological, biological, and cultural heritage resources within it are perpetually preserved.
“The State Government has elevated geo-tourism products, such as TT5 Nature Escape Park, The Treasure @ Taman Herba Gopeng, Tasik Chermin, and Masoorat Heritage Park. Various art, cultural, and youth empowerment activities have also been successfully carried out.
“The naming and positioning of Geopark Lembah Kinta were undertaken to highlight its potential as a MICE (Meetings, Incentives, Conventions, and Exhibitions) industry hub, promoting Perak as a preferred tourist destination.
“This includes hosting events such as sports tourism to showcase the potential and existing capacities of Lembah Kinta and Geopark Lenggong on the national and international stages,” he added.