SAINT PAUL – Mayor Chris Coleman joined U.S. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy on Wednesday to talk climate change and tour a groundbreaking new energy efficiency system at the Science Museum of Minnesota in Saint Paul that will dramatically reduce the museum’s carbon footprint.
The pair spoke with museum officials about a new advanced heat recovery system, which captures and reuses heat energy rather than discarding it, as is commonly done in most large commercial, institutional and industrial buildings. The advanced heat recovery system will reduce the Science Museum’s demand for heat energy by more than 80 percent and overall energy consumption by 40 percent—a major decrease, considering the museum’s stringent climate control requirements. The museum expects to save $205,000 annually.
“Having Administrator McCarthy in town talking to local leaders about our efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in our city was the perfect opportunity for us to meet with Science Museum officials about this cutting-edge energy-saving system being implemented in one of our most energy-consuming buildings,” Mayor Chris Coleman said. “Saint Paul has consistently been a model of collaboration on sustainability projects, and we remain committed to working together into the future as we strive to reduce our contribution to climate change.”
On her trip to Saint Paul, Administrator McCarthy also met with youth from the Science Museum’s Kitty Andersen Youth Science Center, as well as took part in a roundtable with utility representatives, government officials, nonprofits, educators, business leaders and other stakeholders to discuss local energy efficiency efforts and EPA’s work to reduce carbon pollution.
“This area’s leaders in addressing climate change know that our energy and environmental issues are two sides of the same coin,” U.S. EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said. “When we set goals to reduce harmful pollution, it’s American ingenuity that gets us there. That’s what climate action is all about.”
“Given our focus on science and learning, we are proud of our work to reduce our overall energy use – and our carbon footprint,” Science Museum of Minnesota’s Director of Global Change Initiatives Patrick Hamilton said. “That we were able to connect some of our youth interns to Administrator McCarthy was another important highlight of the day.
The museum’s advanced heat recovery system will be fully implemented by June 30. With federal stimulus money, the City of Saint Paul completed 120 energy-saving projects in 60 municipal facilities, reducing the overall energy consumption in those facilities by an average of 30 percent.