Systematic analysis of the barriers to building climate adaptation of polar heritage yielded 218 documents.
Technological barriers are mentioned the most among all barriers.
Lack of data and inventories along with tools and facilities are the key barriers to building climate adaptation of polar heritage.
This paper systematically reviews publications for the period 2002–2020 addressing the barriers to climate adaptation of cultural and natural heritage in the Northern and Southern poles. Climate change and its socio-economic implications deteriorate different forms of cultural and natural heritage, including archaeological sites, historic buildings, and indigenous heritage in the polar regions. Climate adaptation of cultural and natural heritage of polar regions is challenged due to the barriers, constraints, and limitations of various factors such as lack of awareness of polar heritage, remoteness of the sites, and lack of tools and facilities. This paper first presents the general characteristics of 76 documents out of 218. It then analyzes the barriers derived from the content analysis of the publications. Despite growing interest in polar studies, incomplete and inaccurate data and inventories and facilities and tools as technological constraints negatively affect building climate adaptation of polar heritage. Following that, existing regulations and organizations are found to be ineffective and slow to address the issues of communication and collaboration for building climate adaptation of polar heritage. The findings will discuss the policy implications of understanding barriers and tackling them to facilitate the climate adaptation of polar heritage.