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SiLK - Guidelines for the protection of cultural property

11. Pollutants


Until relatively recently, the effects of pollutants emitted by the air and materials on collections and cultural property had not been studied in detail. Only some of the complex cause and effect relationships have been examined to date. It has already been recognized however that cultural property is at risk of alteration, contamination and degradation by a large number of pollutants. In most cases, a combination of contaminants contributes to aging and degradation. The impact of pollutants on cultural property is also intensified by certain parameters such as temperature, humidity and light. Preventive measures and a thorough analysis of the properties of materials in storage or on display can help to mitigate the impact of pollution in museums, libraries and archives.




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