Journal of Comparative Urban Law and Policy


Exacerbated by climate change, sea levels are rising rapidly. This poses a significant, immediate threat to coastal or riverine urban areas and the tangible cultural heritage (e.g. artifacts, buildings, monuments, archaeological sites) that makes them unique. Protecting coastal cultural resources from climate change is quickly becoming a global priority, and comparing cultural heritage laws designed to protect historic resources in coastal areas from several countries may illuminate potential paths forward. Following a brief discussion of the economic and public health benefits arising from the protection of cultural heritage, this article describes, examines, and compares the legal frameworks through which the United States, France, and the United Kingdom address cultural heritage protection in coastal areas. Several case studies from each country are also presented to demonstrate different preservation initiatives.

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