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WA State Historic Preservation Officer Allyson Brooks has joined with California SHPO Juli Polanco in announcing the global launch of the Climate Heritage Network (CHN) on October 24th and 25th from Edinburgh, Scotland. For more information about the CHN, joining the CHN, and participating in the October 24th Launch event, go to the website at:

Following is a joint statement about the CHN and a call to action by joining with the global network of organizations and businesses:   

Dear Colleagues,

As you know, we, many of us, have been involved in the intersection of cultural heritage and climate action for some time now.  In our daily work, collaborating with partners, in conferences and seminars with non-traditional partners, the topic is one of great interest to many within our community as well as in the environmental sector.  You may recall the meeting at NCSHPO last year? 

We are excited by the progress that continues and happy to share that the videos from Climate Heritage Mobilization at the Global Climate Action Summit in San Francisco, September 2018, are now available for viewing.  Through the generous support of our colleagues at  the National Trust for Historic Preservation that enabled the event to be livestreamed, the recording was edited into section and individual speakers for ease of viewing.  They are embedded with direct link in the program of the day so that you may see the deep and wide level of expert speakers, learn more about the intersection from scientists, architects, indigenous communities, and global actors.  And , they are free to all!  You can find them at  click on the Climate Action tab to find the program. Please feel free to also share this exciting learning tool with your constituents and colleagues.

The collaboration and progress have continued since then with many conferences, speaking engagements, gatherings, and individual efforts.  It is with pleasure that we also inform that the Climate Heritage Network (CHN) is set for global launch on October 24-25 in Edinburgh, Scotland.  Hosted by Historic Environment Scotland, with our thoughtful colleague Andrew Potts under the auspices of ICOMOS, and co-chaired by the California Office of Historic Preservation, the Launch will bring together international actors for the purpose of establishing the Network, identifying a framework for action, and setting goals into action by members working together. 

The CHN is a voluntary, mutual support network.  It is focused on raising the ambition of arts, culture and heritage agencies at all levels as well as site management authorities to address climate change, and on coordinating a voice for the culture community in global climate policy and planning. Because the support of NGOs, universities, businesses, and other organizations is need to enable government to act, all these actors are welcome in the CHN too.

Membership in the CHN is free. To join, an entity need simply demonstrate its commitment to addressing climate change and supporting communities in achieving the decarbonization goals and other ambitions of the Paris Agreement by signing or endorsing  the Climate Heritage Network Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). Units of government are invited to sign the MOU while businesses, universities, NGOs, and other organizations are invited to endorse it. You can join here:

Joining the CHN connects an organization to peers around the world committed to the idea that arts, culture and heritage are both impacted by climate change and an asset for climate action; and that culture constitutes an invaluable resource to help communities reduce GhG emissions and strengthen adaptive capacity. The CHN creates an important multi-disciplinary space linking together for climate action those working with landscapes, institutions and collections, archaeology, building, and monuments as well as with creativity, intangible heritage, traditional ways of knowing and practices. The CHN membership will ultimately guide which activities the Network take up but you can read about some of the initial ideas here.

Whether or not you can attend the Edinburgh event, we ask entities to join the CHN by 24 October so they can be included in the launch momentum. Of course, entities may also join thereafter.

•            Joining the Climate Heritage Network is free but mobilizing the arts, culture, and heritage sectors for climate action isn’t. Entities are asked to consider becoming an Endorsing Organization for a donation of £ 150 (about $180). Larger sponsorship packages are also available.

•            The first day of the Launch program (24 October) will be live-streamed.  Connections are limited with priority being given to Endorsing Organizations. Consider hosting a viewing party for the event.

•            The CHN Launch was showcased during coalitions meetings on 21 September at the UN General Assembly in preparation for the UN Climate Action Summit. This reflects the commitment of the CHN to be a platform for arts, culture and heritage voices in the global climate change policy conversation.

Despite profound connections between climate change and culture, today there are thousands of arts, culture, and heritage actors and advocates whose talents have not yet been mobilized on climate change issues.  This is so even in jurisdictions that have made ambitious climate action pledges.  The Climate Heritage Network aims to flip that paradigm.  Join us!

Further, faster, together!


Allyson Brooks and Juli Polanco