UCL Institute for Sustainable Heritage


ISH Director May Cassar speaks to Channel 4 news on global threat of climate change to heritage

8 March 2021

Prof May Cassar spoke about the increasing threat to heritage sites around the world posed by the climate crisis.

May Cassar speaking to Channel 4 News

Prof May Cassar spoke to Channel 4 News' Chief Correspondent Alex Thomson, following a concerning report just released by National Trust has on how climate change could wipe away our past. They’ve outlined a ‘hazard map’ which shows how 30% of their heritage sites are at risk from the impacts of climate change like flooding.

Prof May Cassar said:

In Latin America, in Peru, you've got issues with earthen architecture that is being eroded when El Niño drops unprecedented amounts of rain. In Africa where you've got creeping desertification the desert is encroaching more and more on settlements like timbuktu literally. And in Europe particularly the problem is flooding.

What can we do once heritage sites are lost?

When a community has lived with a piece of heritage all their lives, and it then disappears... it's like a death in the family. So we have to mourn, we have to record and remember and then we have to move on.

Watch the interview with May Cassar in a segment from Channel 4 News:

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