Raharimahefa 2012. Journal Madagascar Conservation & Development

Geoconservation and geodiversity for sustainable development in Madagascar

Tsilavo Raharimahefa

Abstract


Madagascar is well known for its unique and rare natural beauty, and it is one of the biodiversity hotspots for conservation priorities. Many efforts have been made for the protection of biodiversity, yet initiatives towards the conservation of geodiversity are often neglected. Geoconservation refers to the conservation of geological diversity or geodiversity, and it is often applied to a specific location, known as a geosite, where important earth features (geological, paleontological, geomorphological, hydrological and pedological) are protected, preserved and managed. Madagascar is very rich in natural resources and has many spectacular geological features, such as the beautiful gorges and canyons of Isalo, Tsingy de Bemaraha, Ankarana caves, hot springs and volcanic lakes of Itasy, all of which should be conserved and protected by local authorities, the private sector and local communities. Such initiatives can not only help to maintain and protect geological sites of particular importance, but also contribute to sustainable economic development. This essay aims to introduce geoconservation and sustainability in Madagascar, and to increase public knowledge and awareness of geodiversity and its conservation. The creation of geological tourism sites or geoparks is undoubtedly one of the most important steps to promote the conservation of geosites, and the promotion of earth science education should help expand and consolidate their protection.

RÉSUMÉ

Madagascar est renommée pour la beauté exceptionnelle de sa nature qui est unique. L'île est classée parmi les sites stratégiques nécessitant la mise en place de politiques de conservation de la biodiversité. Malgré les efforts déployés par les protecteurs de la nature au cours des dernières années pour la conservation des écosystèmes, la géoconservation demeure un nouveau concept de conservation qui est méconnu par la plupart des Malgaches. La géoconservation se réfère à la conservation de la diversité géologique ou géodiversité, qui s’applique généralement à un endroit spécifique désigné en tant que géosite, dans lequel on reconnait des éléments et des dispositifs géologiques importants qui méritent d’être protégés, préservés et gérés comme par exemple dans les domaines de la paléontologie, la géomorphologie, l’hydrologie et la pédologie. La géodiversité de Madagascar compte parmi les plus spectaculaires au monde, allant des rares gisements de minéraux à des paysages et des reliefs spectaculaires, en passant par de belles plages et des grottes qui sont autant de richesses qui pourraient être classées en tant que patrimoine géologique mondial. Face à la dégradation rapide de la géodiversité à Madagascar, il est urgent d’adopter une politique efficace de géoconservation de nombreux sites au profit de la population locale, qui devra aussi permettre de donner un coup de pouce au progrès vers le développement durable du pays.

 


Keywords


Madagascar; geoconservation; geodiversity; development; géoconservation; ressources minérales; minéraux; géologie, géodiversité; développement; geology; landscapes

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.4314/mcd.v7i3.5

Madag. conserv. dev.
ISSN: 1662-2510