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TitleRupestrian world heritage sites: instability investigation and sustainable mitigation
AuthorMargottini, CORCID logo; Bobrowsky, PORCID logo; Gigli, G; Ruther, H; Spizzichino, D; Vlcko, J
SourceAdvancing culture of living with landslides, vol 1: isdr-icl sendai partnerships 2015-2025; by Sassa, K; Mikos, M; Yin, Y; 2017 p. 23-50, 2 Open Access logo Open Access
Alt SeriesNatural Resources Canada, Contribution Series 20200285
PublisherSpringer International Publishing Ag
Meeting4th World Landslide Forum; Ljubljana; SI; May 29 - June 2, 2017
Mediapaper; on-line; digital
File formatpdf
SubjectsArts, Music, Literature; History and Archaeology; conservation; Investigations; Electronic monitoring; Sustainable development
Illustrationsplots; photographs; 3-D models; cross-sections; location maps; tables
Released2017 05 17
AbstractRupestrian settlements were among the first man-made works in the history of humanity. The most relevant masterpieces of such human history have been included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. These sites and their associated remains are not always in equilibrium with the environment. They are continuously impacted and weathered by a variety of internal and external factors, both natural and human-induced, with rapid and/or slow onset. These include major sudden natural hazards, such as earthquakes or extreme meteorological events, but also slow cumulative processes such as the erosion of rocks, compounded by the effects of climate change, as well as the role of humans, especially in conflict situations. Many rupestrian sites have been carved into soft rock, generally with UCS < 25 MPa (ISRM in Int J Rock Mech Min Sci Geomech Abs 18:85-110, 1981), in vertical cliffs, and show major conservation issues in the domain of rock slope stability and rock weathering. This paper reports the experience of rock fall mitigation in rupestrian sites, mainly from the UNESCO World Heritage List (Bamiyan in Afghanistan; Lalibela in Ethiopia; Petra in Jordan, Vardzia in Georgia and others). The general approach, implemented in the activities, includes a very detailed interdisciplinary study, with the objective to understand degradation processes and causative factors, followed, as a subsequent step, by proper field conservation work. The latter is mainly related to re-discovering and potential application of traditional knowledge and sustainable practices, and is primarily based on local conservation techniques.

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