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Название: The effects of air pollution on cultural heritage
Автор: Watt J.
Managing the risk to our heritage is, of course, an enormously diverse and
complex task, reflecting as it does the tremendous variety of history, style, art
and culture that is represented. We have many different types of monument,
they are made of many different materials, they range in age over centuries and
they are located in radically different environments. Air pollution is only one of
the risks that threaten this heritage and may frequently not be the most pressing.
In addition we have the added complication that weathering occurs naturally
and indeed is often felt to contribute to a sense of age and serenity that is
fundamental to the way that we value our ancient buildings.
The damage done by air pollution, however, is real, measurable and in many
cases obvious. Our industrial development has left us with a legacy of faceless
statues and blackened buildings that will take many years to repair and
conserve, even when pollution levels are sufficiently reduced to make it
sensible to do so. There are important questions to be asked. How much
damage has been done and is being done? What is this costing us? How can
we be practical in our conservation to prevent unnecessary loss while protecting
context and artistic merit? How much value do people actually place on
intangibles like the peace of a Gothic Cathedral and how can we account for
these very real benefits and others like them (such as the desire to pass on our
legacy to our children and grandchildren) in order to help us raise the money to
carry out our repairs and maintenance?