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The Geoparks initiative was established in 1998 and today there are four levels of geoparks (Aspiring, National, Regional and Global). They exist in a series of networks - National, Regional (eg. European and Asia-Pacific), and Global. Today there are hundreds of national level geoparks and over 130 Global Geoparks in 35 countries. They are on all continents except for Australia. A geopark is a clearly defined area with geological heritage of significance which fosters environmentally appropriate, socio-economic sustainable development. Geoparks use their heritage to promote awareness of key issues facing society in the context of the dynamic planet we live on. Geoparks promote awareness of geological features (through conservation, information and education) and geological resources (through geotourism and sustainable development). Geoparks offer a unique vehicle to foster community-based, sustainable, regional development in Australia. An added benefit is they are allied to the powerful UNESCO global network and brand.