Leading Museums, Museum Leaders

Sustainability Guide

 ‘Sustainable Climate Control and Lighting’ Museums and Galleries NSW Alert, 15 October 2014

M&G QLD has released A Practical Guide for Sustainable Climate Control and Lighting in Museums and Galleries. This resource aims to assist the sector to make informed decisions around viable, economically and environmentally sustainable methods of exhibition practice and collections care by identifying appropriate technologies, products and systems. 

Prepared by consultancy firms Steensen Varming and International Conservation Services, A Practical Guide for Sustainable Climate Control and Lighting in Museums and Galleries is informed by national and international theory and practice.

In this era of sustainability and energy use, best-practice expectations for building systems are rapidly evolving. Museum and gallery facilities are under increasing pressure to reduce their environmental impact and be run more efficiently, whilst the objective to provide the optimum environment for exhibition display continues to be the key interest. There are also opportunities for museums and galleries to benefit from government initiatives to improve their facilities in all aspects whilst addressing the sustainability objectives.

With the above in mind, this document aims to form a practical Guide for museums and galleries discussing available technologies, methodologies and key trends in climate control and lighting. We have to assist museums and galleries in making informed decisions to improve their facilities to provide a more sustainable building environment, which holistically embraces and balances the necessities of visitor experience, collections care and energy performance.

What the guide provides

This Guide is designed to provide practical advice to museum and galleries on the commissioning or upgrading of climate control and lighting systems in museum buildings.

The Guide is divided into four main information sections:

Section 2 provides key background information on the museum environment including how damage is caused, and the consequences of a poor environment.

Section 3 discusses the design parameters to be considered in selecting both an appropriate environmental and suitable lighting system. This section includes a discussion on current international standards and debate relating to the issues.

Section 4 focuses on sustainable outcomes, and within this context details the relative merits and cost of a wide range of solutions that can be considered when seeking to resolve or improve environmental and lighting issues.

Section 5 provides a practical implementation plan for assessing a collection and building and a process to follow in moving towards more sustainable outcomes.

A bibliography, glossary and further information follow in the Appendices.

Feedback welcomed

M&G QLD and the project partners invite feedback on A Practical Guide for Sustainable Climate Control and Lighting in Museums and Galleries, which will be used to inform a revised version of the resource to be released in 2015. Feedback can be emailed to rebekah.butler@magsq.com.au



If you would like to receive a higher resolution version of A Practical Guide for Sustainable Climate Control and Lighting in Museums and Galleries please contact M&G QLD at information@magsq.com.au or 07 3215 0820 or free call (within QLD) 1800 680 433.

To download the Practical Guide: www.magsq.com.au

This project is delivered by Museums & Galleries Queensland in partnership with Museums & Galleries of NSW. Regional and Public Galleries Association of NSW and Regional Galleries Association of Queensland.

Council of Australasian Museum Directors, c/o Ms Daryl Karp, Museum of Australian Democracy at Old Parliament House PO Box 3934 Manuka, Australian Capital Territory 2603 Australia, © CAMD 2020
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