Home
This Title All WIREs
WIREs RSS Feed
How to cite this WIREs title:
WIREs Clim Change
Impact Factor: 6.099

Climate change impacts on cultural heritage: A literature review

Full article on Wiley Online Library:   HTML PDF

Can't access this content? Tell your librarian.

Abstract Climate change, as revealed by gradual changes in temperature, precipitation, atmospheric moisture, and wind intensity, as well as sea level rise and changes in the occurrence of extreme events, is already affecting cultural heritage sites. Accordingly, there is a rapidly increasing body of research reporting on the impacts of climatic stressors on cultural heritage and on the assessment of climate change impacts on cultural heritage assets. This review synthesizes the international literature on climate change impacts on tangible cultural heritage by developing hazard‐impact diagrams focusing on the impacts of gradual changes in climate on: (1) the cultural heritage exposed to the outside environment, (2) the interiors of historical buildings and their collections, and (3) a third diagram associated with climate change and the impacts due to sudden changes in the natural physical environment (e.g., storm surges, floods and landslides, wildfire) in addition to sea level rise, permafrost thawing, desertification and changes in the properties of the oceans. These diagrams, which depict the relationships between various stressors and their impacts on cultural heritage, will allow other researchers, stakeholders, and potentially decision makers to determine the potential impacts of climate change on a specific cultural heritage asset without a separate examination of the literature. This review thus provides the current state‐of‐the‐art on the impacts of climate change on the tangible, built heritage, that is, monuments, archeological sites, historical buildings, as well as their interiors and the collections they hold, highlights the limitations of previous research, and provides recommendations for further studies. This article is categorized under: Assessing Impacts of Climate Change > Evaluating Future Impacts of Climate Change
Impacts of climatic stressors on the outdoor cultural heritage as reported in the literature
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Damp penetration on a wall at the Hill House, Helensburgh, Scotland, UK © Photo by Dr. John Hughes
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Salt efflorescence on Globigerina limestone at the Tarxien Prehistoric Megalithic temples in Malta (a, b); shown in detail the area behind the bowl (b); and on brick masonry at Dozza, Bologna, in Italy (c) © Photos by Dr. Chiara Ciantelli
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Pollution soiling and biological colonization on stone; at Edinburgh Castle, Scotland, UK (a) © Photo by Dr. Elena Sesana; on Elmbank street, Glasgow, Scotland, UK (b) © Photo by Dr. John Hughes; at Largie standing stones (c) © Photo by Dr. Elena Sesana; and at Kilchurn Castle, Scotland, UK (d) © Photo by Dr. Elena Sesana
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Ħaġar Qim Temple, Qrendi, Malta (a, b), showing shelters to protect the archeological site © Photo by Dr. Elena Sesana
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Changes in the natural physical environment affecting cultural heritage as reported in the literature
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]
Climate change impacts on the indoor cultural heritage and associated collections as reported in the literature
[ Normal View | Magnified View ]

Browse by Topic

Assessing Impacts of Climate Change > Evaluating Future Impacts of Climate Change

Access to this WIREs title is by subscription only.

Recommend to Your
Librarian Now!

The latest WIREs articles in your inbox

Sign Up for Article Alerts