Track 1: Effects of Climate Change in Warm Weather Coastal Regions
Cultural maintenance in the face of climate change affects the fabric of our heritage at so many levels. This is especially true in warm, humid climate zones as well as coastal areas affected by storm surges and sea level rise. In terms of preservation technology, this reality requires us to learn more about the durability of materials and assemblies through both applied research and predictive modeling. This evidence-based knowledge then informs preventative treatment considerations to ensure the long-term preservation of our cultural heritage. Similarly, best practices for the critical steps to take following an extreme weather event must be understood and disseminated, so that the irreversible loss of historic materials, structures, and landscapes is avoided.
For an individual structure, understanding and applying the best methods for energy use reduction and building envelope retrofits - relative to a historic building’s climate zone - can reduce the overall amount of greenhouse gas emissions from existing buildings while preserving and enhancing cultural heritage. At a larger scale, community-based participatory research that uses free online climate planning resources can enhance the development of culturally relevant climate adaptation and coastal resiliency plans while engaging and educating the public to be informed stewards of our shared cultural heritage.