An international dialogue on the use of space technologies in world heritage protection kicked off on May 27 at China's Mount Huangshan, a UNESCO natural and cultural heritage site and global geopark.
Representatives of UNESCO-designated places, including World Heritage Sites, Biosphere Reserves and UNESCO-affiliated Global Geoparks, gathered together for the first time for a four-day dialogue in Huangshan, Anhui province.
The dialogue was aimed at boosting communication and cooperation among UNESCO-designated places, and enhancing protection, management and sustainable development of these places through space technologies, said Hong Tianhua, secretary-general of the dialogue's organizing committee.
As the number of UNESCO-designated places has increased in recent years, protection and management of these places have become more challenging. The rapid development of space technologies, such as aeronautical, astronautical and ground-based monitoring, have been one of the key technologies to solve global environmental and development issues, said Hong, also executive deputy director of the International Center on Space Technologies for Natural and Cultural Heritages (HIST).
Established in July 2011, the Beijing-based HIST is under the auspices of UNESCO and hosted by the Institute of Remote Sensing and Digital Earth (RADI) of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), which is aimed at providing technical services to UNESCO and its member states on the use of space technologies for UNESCO-designated places.
More than 160 representatives from UNESCO-designated places in 23 countries attended the dialogue, which was organized by HIST and the RADI of CAS and hosted by the Mount Huangshan Administrative Committee.