Concept of geoparks in Slovakia
The issues of geoparks in Slovakia were included for the first time in the Programme Statement of the Government of the SR of 2006 from which it follows:
”In accordance with the Agenda 21, the Strategy of sustainable development of the European Union and the National Strategy of Sustainable Development, the Government will take care of the development of tools for the environmental policy, which will condition the development of the school and out-of-school upbringing and education, environmentalistics, environmental regionalization, ethics, public education, promotion and environmentally beneficial activities of youth and citizens. The development of environmental public education and regulated tourism will require further building of the infrastructure of nature and landscape protection, in particular educational trails and localities, geoparks, information and training facilities“.
Report of implementation of the Concept of geoparks in the SR (the concept) was approved by the Government of the SR with its Resolution No. 740 of 15 October 2008. According to Point B.1 of this Resolution, the Government of the Slovak Republic imposed on the Minister of Environment to implement the concept for geoparks in the categories A and B and submit for the Government meeting the report of concept implementation until 30 October 2012. According to the concept, the Banská Štiavnica Geopark was included in the category A and the Banská Bystrica Geopark and the Novohrad Geopark in the category B.
The material defined the substance of geoparks and their purposes and it also comments on their development both in the world and Europe. It includes the summary of building operated and new geoparks in the preparatory, implementation and operating phases, their characteristics, the method of operating and the procedure of building the individual geoparks in accordance with the concept in 2009 to 2012, as well as the possibility of incorporation of the operated Banská Štiavnica Geopark into the European Geoparks Network. The only geopark in the territory of Slovakia that was accepted in 2010 in the European Geoparks Network and the Global Geoparks Network under the auspices of UNESCO is the Novohrad-Nograd Geopark, at the time of its accepting the first cross-border geopark in Europe.
To download: Report of implementation of the Concept of Geoparks in the SR of 2008 (Office of the Government of the SR No. 740/2008)
The necessity to build and operate geoparks in Slovakia was also highlighted in the Programme Statement of the Government of the SR in 2012, therefore it is necessary to ensure more effective cooperation between the Ministry of Environment of the SR and the Ministry of Transport and Construction of the SR with higher territorial units, self-governments and hobby civil associations.
Based on the aforementioned and in accordance with the conclusions of the Concept, the Report of implementation of the Concept of geoparks of the SR (the report) was drawn up in 2012 that was approved after its interdepartmental consultation procedure by the Government of the SR in October 2012.
To download :Report of implementation of the Concept of Geoparks in the SR of 2012 (Office of the Government of the SR No. 608/2012)
Based on the Report, the commission was established composed of representatives of the Ministry of Environment of the SR, some other ministries, the Slovak Environment Agency, the State Geological Institute of Dionýz Štúr, the Technical University in Košice, self-governing regions, the Novohrad, Banská Bystrica and Banská Štiavnica Geoparks. In 2014, this Commission drew up Updating of SR Geoparks Concept with the plan to create the Geoparks network of the SR.
The purpose of drawing up the update of the Concept of geoparks of the SR was the necessity to re-categorize geoparks, specification of the criteria for using the term “geopark”, integration of the existing geoparks into the Geoparks Network of the Slovak Republic according to the model of the other European countries and creating the updated model of financing, operating and building geoparks.
The submitted material was the subject of interdepartmental consultation procedure and approved for the meeting of the Government of the SR on 7 January 2015.
To download: Update of the Concept of Geoparks in the SR of 2015 (Office of the Government of the SR No. 15/2015)