Integrated Approach for Inventories and Quantitative Assessment of Geological and Paleontological Sites from Precambrian to Quaternary Successions in the Salt Range, Pakistan

Abstract

The Salt Range, Pakistan exhibits the most complete record of sedimentary successions, ranging from Precambrian to Quaternary period and acts as a natural field museum for geologists. Unfortunately, the lack of responsiveness among population and geo heritage managing institutions in Pakistan, this beautiful and valuable museum is excavated for construction purposes. Based on the preliminary geo heritage assessment and evaluation, the Salt Range, Pakistan is subdivided into a possible combinations of eight different geo-sites. So, a new methodology (multidisciplinary integrated approaches (MMIA)) has been adopted in this paper which combines three key quantitative indicators i.e., scientific values (SV), relevance grade (RG) and abstract perceptiveness (AP).The classification scheme of the geo-sites in the Salt Range further define the divisions based on the global, conceptual, and scenic values having global stratigraphic correlation and fossils abundances. This research provides the preliminary studies to evaluate, identify, and categorizes the potential of the exposed successions of Salt Range to become a global geopark under the UNESCO operational guidelines and global geopark features. This work may help in the development of new geoparks in a country where the global geopark perception is innovative and evolving. In general, the proposed geo-sites of the Salt Range have high scientific values, regional to global relevance grade and poor geoconservation which are at the high risk of erosion or other means of degradation by natural or anthropogenic.The inventories and their results display the scientific importance of the study area. Therefore unified policies should be implemented for the protection and conservation of natural museums of geology for the future which could help in the country's sustainable development by promoting geo-tourism.

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Acknowledgments

This manuscript is a part of the author PhD disseration/Fieldwork. Mr. Muhammad Yaseen thanks to the Chairman Dr Amir Ali, Associate Professor, faculty, and staff of the Department of Earth Sciences, Quaid-i-Azam University Islamabad for supporting during the PhD coursework.I am very thankful to Mr. Umer Habib (PhD) from University of Tasmania, UTAS Hobart, Australia for reviewing the draft in respect of English correction.The suggestions of including new references and revising the figures/diagrams by the two reviewers further enhanced the clarity of the paper. The authors acknowledge the support of Department of Geology, Abdul Wali Khan University, Mardan in assisting the field observations.

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Yaseen, M., Naseem, A.A., Ahmad, J. et al. Integrated Approach for Inventories and Quantitative Assessment of Geological and Paleontological Sites from Precambrian to Quaternary Successions in the Salt Range, Pakistan. Geoheritage 13, 31 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12371-021-00553-z

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Keywords

  • Characterization
  • Inventories
  • Geo-heritage Geo-sites
  • Precambrian-Quaternary successions
  • Salt Range
  • Pakistan