SHARJAH / WAM
The Environment and Protected Areas Authority (EPAA), announced that the Geological Park in Al Buhais on the plains of Al Madam area will open on January 20, to introduce visitors and residents to the geological importance of Jebel Buhais and the surrounding areas.
The park provides visitors with the opportunity to view exhibits in the halls and wander around the garden on paths designed to showcase the formation of prominent geological features such as the Hajar Mountain range, other mountains, gravel plains, dunes and the Arabian Gulf.
Hana Saif Al Suwaidi, EPAA Chairperson, said, “Jebel Buhais Geological Park was established to introduce visitors to Sharjah’s rich and ancient geological history. Stretching between the Gulf of Oman and the Arabian Gulf, Sharjah’s mountains, alluvial fans and dunes offer glimpses into tectonic plates, the nature of the small peripheral plate, the formation of the ocean crust and the effects of climate change, landscape development and human migration. The park highlights the mass extinction that occurred 65 million years ago, which killed at least 75 percent of marine and land animals, including non-flying dinosaurs.”
Al Suwaidi added, “Jebel Buhais, which rises approximately 340 metres above the neighbouring plains, is an important national site, especially as it has been a human settlement for thousands of years. In recent years, the slopes and surrounding area have been the site of archaeological excavations.”
She stated, “The location of the park in particular and the mountain, in general, provides evidence of how nature was formed at least 93 million years ago. The site has a wealth of fossilized remains of many ancient marine creatures that inhabited the shallow seas that submerged most of the land in the UAE until relatively recently from a geological perspective.”
The park includes two archaeological sites that have contributed to knowledge about the history of human settlement in this area, which dates back more than 125,000 years.
In January 2018, His Highness Dr Sheikh Sultan bin Muhammed Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah, issued an Emiri Decree No. 05 of 2018, which provided for the establishment of Jebel Buhais Nature Reserve. Subject to the provisions of Articles 64 to 67 of Federal Law No. 24 of 1999 regarding the protection and development of the environment, the undertaking of business, activities or actions that damage or degrade the ecosystem, harm marine or wildlife or affect archaeological and heritage activities are prohibited.