MERN - Québec Mines - Québec's geological heritage: geosites

        ISSN en ligne :

february 2004

Québec's geological heritage: geosites

Pierre Verpaelst
Direction de géologie Québec

In fall 2001, the gouvernement du Québec implemented the Québec Protected Areas Strategy/QPAS (Stratégie québécoise des aires protégées/SQAP). This strategy stems from the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development, held in Rio de Janeiro in 1992. During the conference, the foundations of sustainable development for ensuring the equilibrium and future of the planet were laid. The strategy includes the goal of protecting 8% of the territory.

In December 2001, the Ministère des Ressources naturelles, de la Faune et des Parcs (MRNFP) set up a working group to develop a process for designating remarkable or outstanding geological sites, also called geosites. The group consists of representatives from the mining industry, universities, professional organizations, and the MRNFP. The working group's objectives are:

  1. to prepare an action plan;
  2. to develop a process for designating geosites;
  3. to submit it for consultation; and
  4. to implement it in 2004.

Why protect geological sites?
What is a geosite?
Where are the geosites that need protection?
How can geosites be protected?
When will the geosites actually be designated?


QUÉBEC, MINISTÈRE DE L’ENVIRONNEMENT, 1999 - Aires protégées au Québec : Contexte, constats et enjeux, 64 pages.

QUÉBEC, MINISTÈRE DE L’ENVIRONNEMENT, 2002 - Les aires protégées au Québec : une garantie pour l’avenir, Plan d’action stratégique, premiers résultats, 44 pages.

BOUCHARD, Michel, 2002 - La notion de géosites et géoparcs et les sites géologiques exceptionnels (SGE), Ordre des géologues du Québec, 9 pages.

PRICHONNET, G., 2001 - La notion de géosites et de géoparcs et son application à la Stratégie québécoise sur les aires protégées, Association professionnelle des géologues et géophysiciens du Québec, 12 pages.

UNESCO, 2000, Report by the Director-General on the feasibility study on developing a UNESCO Geosites/Geoparks Programme, Executive Board, 160th session.



Previous page