We all love London’s Natural History Museum and for those who have never been, make sure that it goes straight onto your bucket list because it is an awe-inspiring building that will make your jaw drop (and the stuff on the inside ain’t too bad either.)
But it isn’t the fancy masonry, or the wonders of history hidden inside that had brought the NHM to be featured on our website, oh no, it turns out that the folks who run the museum are just as focused on the future as they are on the past.
Coping with millions of visitors a year, one thousand staff and not to mention the incredible size of the museum alone, you would be forgiven by thinking that heating the building and providing enough electricity to run everything would be an incredibly costly activity, not just the financial cost but the environmental one.
The electricity for appliances, heating and power for the air conditioning are all provided by the museums very own Combined Heat and Power Plant! This alone increases energy efficiency as when we transfer external power long distances, most of that original power will be lost in transport, so the NHM having their own power plant avoids this problem. But wait, there’s more. Air conditioners are notorious for wasting energy and letting unused energy escape. But thanks to the NHM’s clever saline solution process, which uses no harmful chemical, excess heat that is released by the air conditioner is captured and turned into chilled water, therefore making sure as much energy is saved as possible.
As well as energy saving, the NHM also has a strict recycling policy when it comes to everyday waste and also building waste. When the museums old entomology building had to be demolished to make way for the new state of the art Darwin Centre, 95% of the old building materials were re-used to help contruct the Darwin centre and the new materials needed were sourced from local suppliers where possible.
So it is obvious that London’s Natural History Museum is taking as much care to look after our future as it is doing to look after our past and our history. Whoever thought a building full of old stuff could be so state of the art? Well check it out, because it is truly wonderful.
To find out more please visit http://www.nhm.ac.uk/