Culture and Climate Change

Culture: the ultimate renewable resource to tackle climate change

Climate change is one of the major challenges of our time. This is also true for the cultural and natural heritage of humanity.

Yet culture is a key resource for mitigating and adapting to climate change.

UNESCO is fully committed to addressing the impact of climate change on culture, and to enhancing the potential of culture for global climate action, through natural areas protected by the World Heritage Convention, the safeguarding of intangible heritage and traditional knowledge, and support to cultural institutions and actors, drawing on all its international conventions in the field of culture.

We must act collectively to protect cultural heritage from the growing effects of climate change. UNESCO’s natural World Heritage sites and intangible heritage practices play an important role in protecting the environment and conserving biodiversity

Audrey AzoulayDirector General of UNESCO

Facts and Figures

  • 190 million tons of CO2 absorbed each year by forests in 257 natural World Heritage sites.
  • Of 318 World Heritage cities nearly 1/3 are coastal and are impacted by climate change.


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