MUSA is going greener – heat from the rock under the car park helps!

The Museum of the University of St Andrews (MUSA) has attained the top standard for sustainability from the Green Tourism Business Scheme.

musa-exterior-lAs MUSA is one of the University’s greenest buildings, the University submitted an application to the Green Tourism Business Scheme, an organisation which supports sustainable tourism and helps tourism businesses to develop through a grading program.

The scheme assesses their energy and water efficiency, waste management and support of local culture. Through the scheme, MUSA has been recognised for its continual commitment to sustainable tourism.

The museum, housed in a nineteenth century coach-house, was extensively renovated in 2007 to provide a suitable home for the University’s internationally significant historical collections, and from the start it was ensured that the building was as sustainable as possible.

Solar panels are installed on the roof of the museum, generating electricity which is used to power the lights and the lift within the building, while a ground source heat pump extracts heat from the rock beneath the car park to be used in the galleries’ underfloor heating.

Following a grading visit at the end of July, Green Tourism assessors also recognised the success of the year-round education programme for adults and families at MUSA. Many of the workshops make use of the museum’s unique location to explore the local environment and the collections, such as Bird Spotting for Beginners and Bug Hunt, as well as using recycled materials to encourage creativity in one of the many craft workshops.

Barbara Aitken, Environment Officer at the University of St Andrews said:

“We are delighted that MUSA has won this prestigious award which recognizes their hard work and commitment to sustainability. It is a welcome addition to the environmental awards the University have already received for Green Tourism”.

Agnes Blackadder Hall, David Russell Apartments and McIntosh Hall have all achieved gold awards recently, and the success of all of these sites signifies the University’s commitment to sustainability.

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