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Climate Change as a Threat to Peace

Impacts on Cultural Heritage and Cultural Diversity


Edited By Sabine von Schorlemer and Sylvia Maus

This volume takes a fresh look at climate change as a threat to peace and its impacts on cultural heritage and cultural diversity. It proceeds under the assumption that the impacts of climate change on cultural heritage and cultural diversity may challenge sustainable global peace. As innovative feature, the interdisciplinary nexus between cultural heritage and peace is explicitly taken account of. Accordingly, corresponding threats on climate change and conflict on the one hand, and protection of cultural property and climate change on the other, are pulled together into one conceptual triangle. While the importance of the protection of cultural heritage in armed conflicts tends to become more and more recognized, the crucial role of cultural policy as a reconciliatory, proactive element of building and securing of sustainable peace has so far been largely underestimated. This volume brings together opinions of renowned experts in the fields of international law as well as natural sciences, engineering, humanities and social sciences. The focus lays on the legal and institutional challenges faced by national and international stakeholders, by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in particular. Moreover, it alludes to broader issues of mitigation, adaptation and resilience.
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Lex Lata and De Lege Ferenda – Legal Challenges of Cultural Property Protection in the Context of Climate Change


Guido Carducci∗ What Consideration is Given to Climate and to Climate Change in the UNESCO Cultural Heritage and Property Conventions? I A Preliminary Clarification: Climate per se, the Protection of Cultural Property and Heritage versus Climate Change Before entering into the rather recent debate on climate change, which is a rapid, and in part unexpected, increase in the worldwide temperature, it is methodo- logically appropriate to make a few remarks as to climate per se and the protec- tion of cultural property and heritage law. Going beyond any misleading appearance of a monolithic composition of property and heritage, cultural property – and even more if it is combined with Cultural Heritage – includes a huge variety of types and categories of mova- bles and immovables. Each of them is made of materials that are more or less climate-sensitive and that deserve to be considered individually; conserved and protected in different ways. There is no one-fits-all solution and the Cultural Heritage or property material is, from a climate perspective, as relevant as the heritage or the property itself. For instance, humidity and rain can affect and heavily damage wood (as in structures, doors, frames), textiles (as in carpets) and untreated paper (as in maps and drawings), although it does not affect equally stone in a sculpture. Each category of material that composes cultural property and heritage is to be considered individually. Each has its own degree of sensitiveness to climate and of fragility to climate-related events, such as hu- midity, rain, draught, etc....

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