HYBRID EVENT: You can participate in person at Valencia, Spain or Virtually from your home or work.
Geology 2022

Jillian Huntley

Jillian Huntley, Speaker at Geology Conferences 2022
Griffith University , Australia
Title : Salt in the wound: Rock art degradation and climate change in the Australasian Monsoon Domain


To date research, planning, mitigation strategies, and adaptation policies regarding the effects of climate change on cultural heritage have focused on primary impacts like inundation from sea level rise. Drawing on work in Island Southeast Asia and Northern Australia, I will discuss multiscalar, secondary impacts and the unique challenges faced managing accelerating rock art degradation in the most climatically dynamic region on Earth – the Australasian Monsoon Domain. Using salt weathering/haloclasty as an example, I will discuss the mechanisms of art loss at panel, site, and regional scales. I will illustrate the complex issues faced, highlighting social justice inequities for communities with cultural responsibilities for their heritage. I argue that while interagency cooperation and strategic planning are vital for local governance, even the best interventions will have limited outcomes without serious, urgent reduction in global carbon emissions to net zero as soon as possible. 


Dr Jillian Huntley specializes in the physicochemical characterization of ochres (mineral pigments), rock art and shelter/cave environments. She uses cutting-edge methods to investigate how past peoples interacted with each other, and their landscapes. Jillian has made a significant contribution to climate change sustainability and adaptation research agendas in the Equatorial Tropics through her work on the effects of climate change on the Pleistocene rock art of Sulawesi (published in Scientific Reports). She is one of the experts currently overseeing the design and implementation of the Murujuga Rock Art Monitoring Program (2020-2024) for the Western Australian government.

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