EGU21-9236, updated on 04 Mar 2021
EGU General Assembly 2021
© Author(s) 2021. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

Inventory of geoheritage as a tool for local sustainable development in Cajón del Maipo Geopark Project, Central Chile 

Camilo Vergara Daskam1,2, Cristóbal Estay Daskam1, and Anthony Prior Carvajal1
Camilo Vergara Daskam et al.
  • 1FUNDESO Cajón del Maipo, San José de Maipo, Chile (
  • 2PANGEA Master Program, University of Lille, Lille, France & University of Minho, Braga, Portugal

Cajón del Maipo is a mountainous territory located in the Andes Cordillera of central Chile (~ 5,000 km2), 50 km away from Santiago city, and is one of the most visited tourist destinations in the country. It reaches a maximum altitude of 6,570 masl, and its geology is controlled by the compressive subduction regime between the Nazca and the South American plates. In its rocks, 166 million years of geological history are recorded, and its geodiversity includes: sedimentary and igneous rocks, active stratovolcanoes, thermal springs, tectonic structures, glacial and fluvial morphologies, landslides, marine fossils, and abandoned mine shafts. The area is part of the Chilean biodiversity hotspot, and hosts an important and strained water system, with ~650 glaciers that supplies almost the entire city of Santiago with drinking and irrigation water, home to more than 7 million people.

This work shows the existing inventory of geoheritage of Cajon del Maipo, which includes 43 geosites classified in 10 geological thematic areas. Geosites were selected and assessed using a quantitative approach in the three main types of use (scientific, educational and geotouristic), and in their degradation risk. Of the inventory list, 5 geosites have international relevance, 17 national relevance, 10 regional and 11 local relevance. Additional values where highlighted associated with potential for developing geopark activities (cultural and intangible heritage, biodiversity, climate change and geological hazards), as well as legal aspects regarding protection. Combining statistical, geographical, and qualitative analysis of the previous parameters, geosites were categorized in multi labeled management classes, which are: geotourism, education, science, and conservation. For each class, management priorities and opportunities were identified, including research, protection, promotion, infrastructure habilitation, and monitoring. In the next years, this inventory must be the framework for developing a local geoheritage management plan, and the basis for the elaboration of the application dossier of Cajon del Maipo as a UNESCO Global Geopark.

Cajon del Maipo Geopark Project has been developed since 2017 with the main goals of providing economic opportunities for local community and promoting the sustainable management of natural and cultural heritage. Framed in the project Action Plan, actions and initiatives have been implemented, including: geoheritage research and geoconservation; geotourism and local products development; geoeducation programs focused on local schools; and networking at local, national, and international levels. All the mentioned initiatives are supported by the creation and the permanent updating of the Cajon del Maipo inventory of geoheritage.

How to cite: Vergara Daskam, C., Estay Daskam, C., and Prior Carvajal, A.: Inventory of geoheritage as a tool for local sustainable development in Cajón del Maipo Geopark Project, Central Chile , EGU General Assembly 2021, online, 19–30 Apr 2021, EGU21-9236,, 2021.