Anger as Chinese rock to be lifted on Austrian peak

Environmentalists have appealed to decision-makers to pull the plug on a controversial installation on one of Austria’s highest mountains.Organisers of Styria’s Regionale10 festival announced recently that famed Chinese artist Ai Weiwei will oversee the positioning of a four-tonne rock at the 2,995-metre Hoher Dachstein later this week.Ai Weiwei – an outspoken critic of the Chinese regime – explained that he wanted to highlight the “tense relation between humans and nature” with his project which will get underway this Thursday before it will be officially presented on 11 July.Now the Austrian Alps Society (Österreichischer Alpenverein or OeAV) have called on politicians and authorities to abandon the plans to lift the boulder – which fell off a mountain in the Chinese province of Sichuan during an earthquake two years ago – on the peak via helicopter.”The chopper operation will have effects on the protected ‘Natura 2000’ nearby,” the body stressed.It also claimed: “Hikers scaling the Hocher Dachstein during the coming 1,000 years will be unable to compensate the carbon dioxide emissions this process will cause.”OeAV recently revealed that 85 of Austria’s 93 glaciers shrunk in 2009.