The Science Museum of Minnesota in St. Paul is one of the most visited museums in the upper Midwest and is a national leader in providing informal science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education. It's also an organization with a genuine commitment to energy efficiency, and this makes it a perfect recipient of the year's first Energy Efficiency Leader Award (EELA) from Trane, a leading global provider of indoor comfort solutions and services and a brand of Ingersoll Rand.
Each year, Trane and Ingersoll Rand choose organizations for this special award who demonstrate an outstanding commitment to implementing best practices in energy efficiency and sustainability. The museum won the EELA for its recent collaboration with Trane on a project to lower the building's carbon footprint and reduce energy cost. Selected upgrades included chillers designed to lessen environmental impact, as well as a building automation system and lighting systems that would optimize building management. The project exceeded expectations by surpassing its original goal of 75 percent of hot water heat savings since installation and by decreasing the amount of energy supply used in the community. In the future, the implemented smart design practices and energy efficient systems are also projected to save the museum more than $300,000 in operating costs year-over-year.
"Our team was determined to reach its energy efficiency goals to provide long-term environmental benefits to our local community and to make our building a living laboratory that demonstrates energy efficiency and sustainable solutions," said Alison Brown, president and chief executive officer, Science Museum of Minnesota. "We want to inspire visitors by showing them that energy efficiency in large buildings is possible."
Museum also partners with Ingersoll Rand Foundation
The museum will continue to invest in the community by partnering with the Ingersoll Rand Foundation on its Year of the Engineer campaign for 2018. This year-long initiative will showcase unique programs and experiences designed to inspire and celebrate engineering's power to turn ideas into innovations. The Ingersoll Rand Foundation provided a $30,000 grant to invest in the museum's education of kindergarten through 12th-grade students on topics geared to inspire them to create a more sustainable world.
Mitchell Farrell, vice president, Commercial heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), presented the grant and award to museum leaders.
"We are very proud to honor the Science Museum of Minnesota with the Ingersoll Rand Foundation grant and Energy Efficiency Leader Award," Farrell said. "The museum exemplifies how partnerships can impact the sustainability efforts of an entire city like St. Paul."
About the Science Museum of Minnesota
With a reach that extends well beyond its riverfront location in downtown St. Paul, the Science Museum of Minnesota is one of the state's most popular museums. The organization serves hundreds of thousands of people each year with its engaging exhibits, breathtaking giant-screen films and unique special events. Science Museum education programs touch students in all of Minnesota's 87 counties each year, and its research programs span the globe. For more information, visit smm.org.