The Ku-Ring-Gai GeoRegion UNESCO Proposal
Pittwater’s zonings have been critical to protecting this spectacular and precious area. Large swathes of our suburbs were classified as Environmental Zones - later redefined by the NSW government as Conservation zones. Much of Pittwater’s residential areas are currently zoned C4 (Environmental Living).
Conservation zones, such as C4, are applied to properties with significant environmental values - which may be ecological, scientific or aesthetic - and to those potentially exposed to significant hazards such as bushfires, flooding and landslides. The zones help determine what owners are allowed to do on their land.
- Cliffs, beaches, and lagoons from Long Reef to Barrenjoey.
- Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park.
- Muogamarra Nature Reserve.
- Northern Garigal National Park.
- Berowra Valley National Park.
- Numerous geological sites, including several sites of international significance. Currently more than 45 key geosites have been identified across the area.
- Extensive rare and threatened flora and fauna
- Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park was registered on the National Heritage List in 2006, with the following assessment:
‘Summary of Significance: Ku-ring-gai Chase National Park and Long Island, Lion Island, and Spectacle Island Nature Reserves contain an exceptional representation of the Sydney region biota, a region which is recognised as a nationally outstanding centre of biodiversity. The place contains a complex pattern of 24 plant communities, including heathland, woodland, open forest, swamps and warm temperate rainforest, with a high native plant species richness of over 1000 species and an outstanding diversity of bird and other animal species. The place is an outstanding example of a centre of biodiversity.’
- The area provides a vast array of Aboriginal heritage sites including rock engravings, cave art sites, grinding grooves, shell middens, occupational deposits, stone arrangements and burials. It is one of Australia’s most dense areas for Aboriginal sites. Over 570 sites recorded, some with multiple site traits.
- The proposed ‘Ku-ring-gai’ GeoRegion reveals the best exposed geological section of early to mid-Triassic period (240 million years ago) sedimentary rocks in the Sydney Basin.
- The sediments were deposited in Gondwana adjacent to a high latitude coast under a cold climate in fluvial, lacustrine, and shallow marine environments. Various rock units contain a diversity of fossils that inform us of past environments over nearly 50 million years.
- The GeoRegion includes eight volcanic diatremes (pipes) and associated dykes with the Hornsby diatreme having perhaps the best known exposed geological section in NSW, if not in all Australia.