18 April 2022 | Heritage and Climate
In 1982, ICOMOS established 18 April as the International Day for Monuments and Sites, followed by UNESCO adoption during its 22nd General Conference. Each year, on this occasion, ICOMOS proposes a theme for activities to be organized by its members, ICOMOS National and International Scientific Committees, Working Groups and partners, and anyone who wants to join in marking the Day.
Building on last year’s theme “Complex Pasts: Diverse Futures” – for 2022, we call on you all to explore the theme: Heritage and Climate through open, constructive and intergenerational dialogues.
In 2020, ICOMOS declared the Cultural Heritage and the Climate Emergency, recognizing the potential of cultural heritage to enable inclusive, transformative and just climate action through the safeguarding of all types of cultural heritage from adverse climate impacts, the implementation of risk-informed disaster responses, delivering climate resilient sustainable development; and this from a perspective of equity and justice.
The Future of our Pasts report, published by ICOMOS in 2019, also advocated for solidarity between heritage professionals and those communities most affected by, or least able to bear the cost of, climate change. Solidarity must form the basis of the actions that we take in this decade on our race to Climate Justice and Equity, and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
Climate Justice and Equity are central to the ongoing discourse concerning the intersections of climate change and heritage:
“Inter-generation equity requires that all people take measures to safeguard and protect Earth’s terrestrial and marine ecosystems, for present and future generations. The interaction of people and Ecosystems is particularly important given the high dependence of one upon the other. Fairness requires attention to principles of Distributive Justice and the notion that the benefits and burdens associated with climate change and its resolution be allocated fairly.”
The Future of Our Pasts, 2019
The International Day for Monuments and Sites – 18 April 2022 provides a timely opportunity to showcase strategies to promote the full potential of heritage conservation research and practice to deliver climate-resilient pathways to strengthen sustainable development, while advocating for just transitions to low-carbon futures. It is part of the ICOMOS Triennial Scientific Plan 2021-2024 and also supports the 2020 ICOMOS’ resolution on People-Centered Approaches to Cultural Heritage.
ICOMOS members are warmly invited to showcase the myriad ways in which heritage can be a source of knowledge that can be employed to address climate change including, but not limited to: examples of South-South and Triangular Cooperation, empowerment of communities displaced by climate change, low-cost interventions to disaster risk management in a heritage context, heritage and environmental education, especially on carbon literacy and just transitions, promotion of gendered narratives to climate adaptation, ecological transitions, equity and justice, and socio-economic development of heritage sites affected by climate change.
The selected theme of “Heritage and Climate” offers the opportunity to respond to questions such as how to employ climate justice and equity to protect heritage and the ways in which we may achieve equitable protection of vulnerable communities through climate action while responding to the UN Decade of Action.
All those wishing to organize events that mark the Day may choose to refer to the subjects of: Disaster Risk (Climate-Induced, Human-Induced), Vernacular Heritage, Heritage in Conflict, Heritage & Democracy, Indigenous Heritage, Sacred-space or Sacred Heritage. Focus questions for consideration might include:
- How can cultural heritage conservation drive climate action?
- What are the risks and responses to Climate Justice and Equity?
- What actions are ICOMOS National Committee, International Scientific Committees, Working Groups, and Task Forces taking in response to the increasing risks and impacts of climate change?
- Future climate change risks and impacts?
More information can be found in the 2021 ICOMOS publication “Heritage and the Sustainable Development Goals: Policy Guidance for Heritage and Development Actors”.
Due to the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic, most events will be accessible online. We encourage you to contact the organizers of events in your country, and you can share your events by writing to: calendrier[at]icomos.org
Potential formats for participation can include, but are not limited to:
- 1-2 minute (max) video submissions from each ICOMOS National Committee, International Scientific Committee and Working Group, showcasing local and regional approaches towards generating climate action. The videos may be shared across ICOMOS social media platforms or sent to calendrier[at]icomos.org. Make sure to include descriptions, quotes or facts to accompany any video, as well as hashtags.
- Photographic submission with captions to explain current approaches and goals for the future. In all cases, please make sure that you retain the rights to any image you post and post it on social media.
- Organize virtual roundtables, host webinars, propose workshops to reflect on the gaps in current theory and practice and invite others to join the discussion.
Don’t forget to use images, SDG icons and hashtags!
#18April #ICOMOS #IDMS2022 #icomosIDMS2022 #climatejustice #heritage4climate @icomosSDG2030 @climateheritage
Let us know how you will celebrate!
Please inform the ICOMOS International Secretariat of planned 18 April initiatives so that we can publish them on the ICOMOS website and share your activities among the members of the worldwide ICOMOS family.
Please send the information to: calendrier[at]icomos.org using the format below (please use short sentences to enable a concise presentation and mention “18 April event – your Committee” in the email subject line):
- Who? Organisers
- What? Short presentation of the activity
- Where? Country, town
- Official contact
- Official website
- Attachments: Poster / leaflet
If you are participating through a photographic or graphic submission, please make sure you retain the rights of the images and add the image credits to your message to the Secretariat along with a written authorization for ICOMOS to use the images and share them on our website, social media and online and printed annual reports free of charge in perpetuity.