Amgueddfa Cymru — National Museum Wales scientists and curators are adding to our knowledge on issues related to sustainable development. Much of our core research is aimed at improving our understanding of both our natural and cultural environment. Some examples of this work is presented here but you can explore more about our work and collections in our virtual museum site Rhagor.
Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales and the British Geological Survey (BGS) have been involved in a large project looking at the sea bed of the Outer Bristol Channel. This area is used for many different activities, ranging from recreation to the dredging of sand. A good knowledge of the sea bed is therefore essential to ensure the sustainability and conservation of our natural resources.
Understanding how buildings have been constructed in the past offers great insights into developing sustainable designs today. Every part of such building has been shaped by the people who used it over the centuries. Our responsibility is to reflect that use, and delve into the silent history of the building. How it was built, where it was, and how it was used. Much of this interpretation depends on the expertise of our Historic Buildings Unit, in conjunction with museum experts, artists and academics from across Europe.
At the height of the last Ice Age, around 18,000 years ago, Wales was uninhabitable; ice sheets covered almost the entire. As the ice sheets retreated north, people recolonized the land, with the first evidence for occupation in Wales coming from caves, dating to around 15,000 years ago. Work by the museum archaeologists and others have been uncovering evidence of these middle stone age people.
Scientists from Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales and Cardiff University have found new evidence of past climate change, which helps solve some of the mystery surrounding the appearance of the vast ice-sheet in Antarctica 34 million years ago.
South Wales has the best-exposed coal-bearing rocks in Europe. Scientists at Amgueddfa Cymru are leading an international team of specialists investigating how the formation of this coal affected the composition of the ancient atmosphere.
For its size, Wales has a rich flora. The variation in rock types and landscapes from the limestones of the Gower Peninsular to the mud-stones and volcanic rocks of Snowdonia support many different and special plants. Understanding this plant biodiversity is important in protecting our landscape and conserving rare and endangered species.
Sustainable Exhibition Design
A great of resource goes into developing exhibitions. Our exhibitions unit is looking at mechanisms for making exhibition design and build more sustainable. For a designer to achieve sustainability in their work a holistic approach must be adopted, one that addresses the spectrum of needs indicated by the three pillars of sustainable development: social responsibility, environmental protection and economic development.