Drone Footage Shows Just How Badly Greenpeace Damaged The Nazca Lines

Recently-released drone footage shows just how bad Greenpeace’s recent stunt caused to the ancient Nazca lines in Peru, and authorities are saying it may be hundreds or even thousands of years before the damage is done.

Last week, according to this Inquisitr report, Greenpeace activists were in Peru, where climate change talks are underway. Hoping to draw attention to climate change, the activists used cloth and stones to erect a banner with the message: “Time for change! The future is renewable. Greenpeace.” In the process, they did extensive damage to the ancient Nazca lines.

Today, PBS Newshour released drone footage of the section of the lines the Greenpeace activists damaged, in video that was posted on UStream.

Wearing special shoes that distribute their weight broadly across the fragile surface of the desert, Peruvian archaeological authorities inspected the damage. Peru’s Deputy Culture Minister Luis Jaime Castillo explains that, by wearing street shoes, the Greenpeace activists broke the “patina” of rocks on the ground, exposing the surface below.

“When you step on it, you simply break the patina and expose the bottom surface. How long does it take for nature… to again create a patina? Hundreds of years? Thousands of years? We really don’t know.”

Scratching away that patina some 1,500-2,000 years ago is how the ancient Peruvians created the Nazca lines in the first place. And the same lack of wind and rain — the Nazca lines are scratched in one of the driest places on Earth — that allowed the Nazca lines in the first place, means that the footprints and other damage left behind by the Greenpeace activists may be visible for another thousand years.

The worst of the damage is visible at 4:43, where the footprints left by the Greenpeace activists’ shoes are visible among the lines, and at 4:59, where the drone camera shows the outline of the letter “C” left by Greenpeace’s message. Barring an expensive and delicate restoration effort — which may not even be possible — those footprints, and that outline, will be left at the Nazca site for hundreds of years.

Do you believe Greenpeace needs to be held accountable for the damage they did to the Nazca lines?

[Image courtesy of: Gizmodo]

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