The history of geoconservation in England: legislative and policy milestones
England, and the UK more widely, have robust and mature statutory and voluntary frameworks for delivering geoconservation. Critical to achieving this advanced position was the inclusion of geoconservation within the first nature conservation legislation enacted in Britain in 1949. The development of this legislation benefited greatly from the wisdom of a number of committees set up to inform government thinking. Many of these committees were advised by the scientific community, including geologists and geomorphologists. The work and influence of these committees in establishing geoconservation as part of statutory nature conservation is explored, and the main statutory and policy milestones which have guided and shaped geoconservation in England since 1949 are described. The rise of the voluntary geoconservation movement in the late 1980s is also explored.
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This book is the first to describe the history of geoconservation. It draws on experience from the UK, Europe and further afield, to explore topics including: what is geoconservation; where, when and how did it start; who was responsible; and how has it differed across the world? Geological and geomorphological features, processes, sites and specimens, provide a resource of immense scientific and educational importance. They also form the foundation for the varied and spectacular landscapes that help define national and local identity as well as many of the great tourism destinations. Mankind’s activities, including contributing to enhanced climate change, pose many threats to this resource: the importance of safeguarding and managing it for future generations is now widely accepted as part of sustainable development. Geoconservation is an established and growing activity across the world, with more participants and a greater profile than ever before. This volume highlights a history of challenges, set-backs, successes and visionary individuals and provides a sound basis for taking geoconservation into the future.