Geodiversity Assessment Through the Évora–Montemor-o-Novo Region: on the Scope of Valorising the Mining Heritage of the Ossa-Morena Zone (SW Iberia, Portugal)

The SW of Iberia registers diverse examples of mining remnants from activities that ceased during the twentieth century, namely in the Ossa-Morena Zone. Such activities exposed outcrops that are part of the mining heritage of the Alentejo region (Portugal), and examples of that are found throughout the Évora–Montemor-o-Novo region at the ancient Montemor-o-Novo iron mines. GeSologically, the area is comprised within the Évora Massif and, besides displaying an important mining and quarrying heritage, also exhibits important geomorphological, structural and lithological features that are a key to understand the geodynamic evolution of the Variscan Orogeny at the SW of Iberia. This work intends to evaluate the geodiversity throughout the region and propose routes that integrate geodiversity features along with the mining heritage of selected ancient mines from the Montemor-o-Novo iron district. Furthermore, the region is characterised by immense cultural, historical and archaeological assets that, together with the geodiversity of this region, have been successfully used for scientific, formal and informal educational purposes. Mining heritage can contribute to the understanding of the role of mineral resources on the past, present and future of society as we know it. The proposal herein disclosed, although intending to promote geoconservation strategies regarding the mineral resources of the Ossa-Morena Zone, does not aim to make exploration and mining unfeasible in these locations. On the contrary, this work intends to promote strategies in which industry and geoheritage can work together on the knowledge transfer to society, contributing to the increase of geological literacy.

Maia, M., Nogueira, P., Mirão, J. et al. Geodiversity Assessment Through the Évora–Montemor-o-Novo Region: on the Scope of Valorising the Mining Heritage of the Ossa-Morena Zone (SW Iberia, Portugal). Geoheritage 14, 90 (2022). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12371-022-00728-2

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