Techniquest’s climate change commitment

September 20, 2007 at 6:13 am | Posted in Britain, Cardiff, Climate change, Museums, Sustainability, Techniquest, UK, Wales | 1 Comment

Time for a trip to Cardiff! To Techniquest, to be precise.

I just discovered Charlie’s European Museum Crawl—an intriguing blog introduced thus:

This blog describes my travels to European science centers during a 3-month sabbatical leave from my home museum, the Sciencenter, Ithaca NY. The goal of this effort is to better understand how European museums are treating topics of related to the environment, sustainability, and climate change and the role they see themselves playing as they protray these topics to their audiences.

The funny thing is that I visit Monterey Bay Aquarium and the California Academy of Sciences, and reflect on how they present the same topics to their audiences😉 (Perhaps I should write about that one day?) So, what does Charlie say about Techniquest in Cardiff, Wales that caught my eye?

Techniquest has begun a major new initiative related to the science of sustainability and climate change. Following David Attenborough’s recent lead, the center has made it a top priority and is working toward the day when one-quarter of its exhibits and programming are related to sustainability.

During the past summer, climate change was the theme for much of their programming and they created a series of temporary exhibits and activities to help visitors become more aware of the issue, including a huge outdoor world map with a facilitated activity on how far your food travels. The energy related to globally vs. locally sourced food is a common theme in European science centers; one used frequently among centers working on visitor awareness of climate change. The exhibit has now been largely dismantled, but this kiosk and a few other exhibits remain; here you can see a fully sealed biological system which has been operating without anything but light and heat for several years. It is used primarily as a prop for explainers in talking with visitors about the interconnections in an ecosystem.

Perhaps most importantly, the director and staff of the center have made a strong commitment to global warming as a critical issue facing the world of the future and one around which they plan to commit significant programmatic resources. The next phase is a proposal to a major foundation to develop a series of permanent outdoor exhibits and related programming on the topic of climate change.

We didn’t visit Cardiff this summer, so missed all this good stuff:

Ecowise [Techniquest Cardiff]
The environment is the hot topic in the Cardiff Bay Techniquest this summer.

Don’t miss out on our most ambitious programme yet. Ecowise will run everyday throughout the summer from 21 July until 2 September. Climate change is high on the agenda and Techniquest is aiming to help everyone understand the issues and the science about being Green. As part of this exciting programme there will be a brand new science theatre shows, 2 new planetarium shows, impromptu demonstrations, make-and-take activities and a solar power workshop.

Download two Ecowise activities to do at home:

And, Charlie covers not only Techniquest, but the Natural History Museum (which I am hoping to visit soon for its new programme The Climate Change Season) and Science Museum (just round the corner) in South Kensington, London too.

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  1. Good for Techniquest – and having just checked their site, I love the sound of this other show we all just missed:

    21st July – 2nd September
    Science Theatre Show: Gran Designs
    This brand new show features two youngsters – used to a throw-away culture – who spend a holiday with their very “green” granny. She’s an inventor who’s created grand designs for reducing, reusing and recycling…and is a miser with energy! How will the children react? What will happen when they go home?

    Hmm – Cardiff’s “Green Granny,” eh? I wonder who that reminds me of…😉


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