A New Climate for Heritage?
Tackling climate change impacts on the East Midlands historic environment
- The summary report of the East Midlands climate change workshop is now available (February 2010)
- The matrix of historic environment impacts
- PowerPoint presentations from the workshop:
- Historic environment impacts: what are the emerging risks to heritage assets? – Ken Smith, Peak District National Park Authority (PDF | 2.86MB)
- Climate change projections for the UK: an introduction to UKCP09 – Laurie Newton, UKCIP (PDF | 2.58MB)
- Climate change adaptation policy: its implementation in the East Midlands and opportunities for the historic environment – Mike Peverill, Regional climate change coordinator, Climate East Midlands (Regional Climate Change Partnership)(PDF | 926KB)
During the East Midlands Climate Change workshop on 10 July 2009, delegates looked at scoping the range of climate change impacts on the historic environment. The matrix of impacts has been developed to include detailed comments and contributions from participants. This is now available here and details of the workshop and its outputs are also available on the Nottingham Declaration website.
Joint regional priorities for leadership on climate change and the historic environment - based on the workshop findings - have been provisionally agreed by the East Midlands Heritage Forum:
- Access for owners, their agents and contractors to advice and guidance on the management of historic assets in new climatic conditions
- A robust, shared and simple methodology for the assessment and registering of risk to heritage assets from new climatic conditions, and from proposals for adaptation and mitigation
- Guidance for policy makers to ensure regional and local plans address vulnerabilities and opportunities of the historic environment [eg on NI188, the wealth of case studies from the workshop, and on issues to be addressed in a further workshop]
- Making a clear case, widely accepted, for the positive contribution that utilizing and reusing historic assets can make in adapting to climate change and reducing carbon emissions
A summary report of the event and next steps will be published during the autumn.
A one-day workshop for the East Midlands region was held on Thursday 16 July 2009 at the Bolero Suite, Nottingham Arena, The Lace Market, Nottingham on behalf of the East Midlands Heritage Forum and East Midlands Climate Change Partnership. Over 70 delegates – practitioners, policy and decision-makers – took part in the workshop, to set the agenda for action on climate change and the historic environment in the East Midlands region. The outline agenda is available here.
The probable effects of climate change in the region are starting to be better understood, but the particular risks for the heritage are not so well-known. Impacts for the historic environment will include effects on historic landscapes and archaeological sites, historic buildings and collections. These are vulnerable both to the direct impacts of climate change (such as sea-level change, more intense rainfall, drought and storms) and to the unintended consequences of action to manage impacts and reduce carbon emissions. Adaptation and mitigation for climate change can be designed to be sensitive to all these aspects – and the historic environment itself offers models for tried-and-tested sustainable practice – but these considerations have yet to be factored into regional policies and action plans.
The Nottingham ‘New Climate for Heritage’ workshop has identified key actions that are urgently needed to address climate change impacts on the historic environment and priorities for adaptation. The project partners are now exploring how to take these forward in the near future.
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