CCWA: Saving Australia's Heritage from Industrial Pollution

By Team

8th December '17


''My name is Benjamin Smith, I am the Professor of World Rock Art at the University of Western Australia. People always ask me what is “rock art”? Do I study Led Zeppelin? I could, but in fact I do something even more interesting. I study the world’s oldest art: ancient images on rocks made by Indigenous peoples around the world, some dating from the dawn of humanity.

I have studied rock art on all continents except Antarctica. Of all the places I have studied, one stands out as unusually special: Murujuga (or Burrup) in Western Australia. It has more rock art than any other place (over a million images). Where some of the art is amongst the oldest anywhere on earth, as much as 40,000 years old. It has some of the first images of the human face, and images of extinct animals. It is an incredible place.

But, new industry in the area is emitting tons of acidic pollution in the air and this is starting to damage the rock art. We need to act now. We need to: monitor the pollution, find innovative ways to protect the art from future damage and use science to help industry reduce its impact. The Aboriginal Owners of the land, and the scientific team assembled to assist them, need your help. The study cannot be truly independent if it is funded by industry. Therefore it needs public support. Please join with us and STAND UP FOR THE BURRUP.''

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