feature will be vastly different from the resilience of a small cultural site such as a fish trap or midden. In addition, while physical impacts may be important for the resilience of heritage places, impacts on intangible qualities such as the loss of knowledge or appreciation may be more important for cultural heritage values. The resilience of the Region’s heritage, while influenced by drivers such as climate change, population growth and economic development, is also strongly affected by knowledge, governance arrangements, resources and community attitudes.153 Resilience of heritage values will depend upon the nature and condition of the heritage value, the way it is valued, the use that is made of it, the impacts on it and the effectiveness of its management. In addition, the resilience of heritage values derived from the natural environment (such as Indigenous heritage values and world heritage values) is a direct function of the resilience of the underpinning natural values.
Factors affecting heritage resilience vary for different types of values.
Factors that affect heritage resilience may be considered at different levels. For example, individual heritage places may be highly susceptible to impacts such as floods and cyclones; however, the total natural or cultural resource base may be sufficiently robust to withstand the loss of individual places without substantive overall loss of heritage value.153 For other heritage values, there may be only a few examples, making the overall value vulnerable to impacts. The resilience of Indigenous cultural values is strengthened by the continuation of cultural practices and the retaining and creating of traditional ecological knowledge. Broader understanding and identification of the tangible and intangible aspects of Indigenous heritage values is also a critical component to improving its resilience. Some Great Barrier Reef Traditional Owners separated from land and sea country areas by European settlers are re-establishing connections to the ancestral lands by: • undertaking on-country cultural camps • promoting cross-generational knowledge sharing between knowledge holders (elders) and their youth • cultural mapping of sacred sites, hunting and no hunting areas as well as turtle and dugong breeding and feeding grounds within their sea country areas • surveys of burial sites, middens, birthing places, initiation sites, story places • recording place names in traditional language. Built heritage, such as lightstations, shipwrecks and buildings, are finite and irreplaceable — unlike a natural system, there is no capacity to regenerate. Such tangible heritage values, along with any associated intangible values of historic places, are generally more resilient where there is ongoing, relevant and viable use, and proactive management, including data collection, good conservation standards, regular maintenance and basic disaster planning.153
8.5 Case studies of improving heritage resilience
The three case studies below illustrate the likely resilience of some heritage values in the Region. They provide a more detailed analysis of the factors that contribute to resilience as described above. As knowledge improves additional case studies may be added in future reports. The case studies presented are: • cultural practices, observances, customs and lore • lightstations • underwater wrecks.
8.5.1 Cultural practices, observances, customs and lore