The Meratus Geopark in South Kalimantan could be the only geopark in Indonesia that produces diamonds. Although it is close to the new state capital (IKN), its existence is threatened by mining.
The destination has 70 potential geosite points spread over one province. Meratus Geopark has been proposed to UGG with 11 geosite points of international scale, and 22 points for national class.
“A potential example is diamond mining. Because the collision process creates high pressure and heat, the process can form diamonds,” said Dr. Jatmiko Setiawan, head of the Geological Engineering department of UPN Veterans Yogyakarta who joined the team to make the Meratus Geopark registered in the UNESCO Global Geopark (UGG).
“There is still mining in Martapura. People’s or traditional mining, and there is one area that was purchased by the local government for conservation and tourism, old-school mining is made, how travelers can pan there,” he said, Wednesday (5/10/2022).
Not only mines, there are also diamond polishing to sales. Diamonds with a quality of 23 carats and above can cost tens of millions and Meratus is the only destination in Indonesia.
“The geosite is of international class. Another example is at the very end point in the Meratus Geopark, there is an area that used to be rocks from a depth of 6,000 meters, now towering as high as 1,500 meters,” he added.
“We chose an area where we can see the city, 360 degrees, there are also relics of Dutch houses as well as rocks as geosites. Then the biology is the big trees in the ophiolite. Then about culture, apart from ancient relics, there are Dayak traditional houses, Dayak dances, weaving, as well as traditional clothes and everything can be sold,” he explained.
On the biological side, Geopark Meratus also has endemic animals, namely proboscis monkeys. There are also deer with long horns, ironwood trees and native trees of Kalimantan.
Meratus Geopark photo exhibition in Jakarta (Photo: Ahmad Masaul Khoiri/detikcom)
Next Threat of Meratus Geopark
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