Explore your backyard
Photos Chris Fourie and Derek Lipman, www.artography.co.za
The Barberton Makhonjwa Mountains has been announced as a UNESCO’s World Heritage Site – the first in Mpumalanga.
The Makhonjwas date back some 3,6 billion years. Known geologically as the Barberton Greenstone Belt, they comprise the oldest and best preserved examples of volcanic and sedimentary rocks on Earth.
The physical and chemical characteristics of these rocks and mountains provide extrodinary scientific evidence about the earliest history of Earth itself, Archaean Earth. The rocks are a record of volcanic activity, oceans, racing tides, asteroid impacts and the birth of the first continent – the Kaapvaal craton –and perhaps even the earliest life.