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Climate warming has begun to ruin the most ancient rock painting on the planet

Australian and Indonesian archaeologists have found that the most ancient specimens of rock painting found on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi began to quickly crumble because of climate warming, writes the magazine.” Syantic Riports'.
“We found that this process accelerated the deposition of salts on the surface of 11 drawings in different sections of the cave near the city. Maros. They break off and thus ruin rock painting,” the researchers wrote, BTA reports.

Seven years ago a group of archaeologists led by Prof. Adam Broome of Australia's Griffith University came across the most ancient rock drawings at the Maros-Pangkep cave complex, located in the south of Sulawesi island.

Some of these images with animals were found back in the middle of the last century, but until the study of Australian archaeologists no one knew that their age was not 10 thousand years, as previously considered, but 40-45 thousand years. This made them the most ancient drawings not only in Asia, but also in the whole world.

The discovery of this art in Broome's words prompted his team to continue exploring other caves on Sulawesi Island. In parallel, scientists monitored the condition of the already discovered specimens created by ancient artists.

These observations found that climate change sharply affects Neolithic art in these places. Fragments of several drawings broke off and fell on the floor of the cave.

Specialists studied them in detail and determined

that a thin layer of salt particles is formed on the surface of the limestone walls of the cave.

They fall there when the water evaporates from the neighboring rice plantations and from the swamp areas of the area.

These salt deposits gradually accumulate and damage the mineral emulsion that protected the drawings from contact with water over millennia. Salt breaks off the wall fragments with valuable images. This process in recent years has greatly accelerated. Because of climate change, both the intensity of rains in the region and periods of drought have increased.


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