Carbon Day: June 1, Every Year

On June 1, 2020, the cultural sector Reports its operational energy use impact on the planet.

•35,000 United States museums, zoos, gardens, aquariums and historic sites

•$50 billion to the GDP

•850 million visitors annually

If we faced our GHG emissions ….

No entity, including a cultural institution, can suspend responsibility on this grave issue any longer.

The cultural sector’s impacts in social and economic reach is significant. It’s carbon footprint must be as well given 35,000 of us cooling, heating, filtering and circulating air and water all while lighting our galleries, shops, animal and object exhibits, parking lots and roadways. It’s time for us to come together to get a handle on this. It requires each institution to understand its operational energy use.

So, whether you’ve ever benchmarked your energy use, or you always do it, June 1, 2020, is the day the sector is setting aside to capture that data and aggregate it so that the field can begin to understand its contribution. It’s the third anniversary of announcement that the US would step out of the commitments in the Paris Agreement. Those of us who care about this work must do it boldly and clearly, in support of our responsibilities to our collections, our publics, our communities, and our planet.

How can you participate?

One Approach – institutions who regularly report energy use

a) By June 1, 2020, finish entering 13 consecutive monthly bills into Energy Star Portfolio Manager, for calendar year 2019.

b) Share your report total with us so that we can aggregate the number into a total operational energy use and then GHG emissions for the sector.

c) Offer phone-call support on Bench Press day to colleagues who are new to this. Or prepare a how-to-video to share with peers ahead of time as they get ready for June 1. Or offer a video of your experience with monitoring and measuring energy use, and how you’re reducing emissions-a sure way to help reluctant peers take action.

c) Repeat next year.

Another Approach – larger institutions who don’t yet regularly report energy use

a) Starting now, and by June 1, 2020, identify who in your organization receives the energy/utility bills. Identify how it is recorded. Ask if it can be included in Energy Star Portfolio Manager for this full-sector monitoring project.

b) Share that information with us or enter the data on or by June 1 with all of us.

Another Approach – Institutions new to this

a) Put June 1st on your calendar

b) Find out where the energy bills come to at your institution and ask to use them for this project.

c) Set up an Energy Star Portfolio Manager account with your institution’s name, building size, and construction date. If you need support, this link provides all the training videos.

d) Collect the bills for all of 2019 (likely 13 months). Determine the square footage of your site and the construction date. Watch the online videos we’ll be sharing about how to do this. Join a get-ready call (schedule to follow). Set up your EnergyStar Portfolio Manager account.

e) Sit down on June 1, 2020, to enter your benchmarking information, knowing that so many others are doing the same with you that day. Share your results with us.

f) Do it again next year, or, better yet, do it monthly to start tracking energy use and planning your reductions.

THANK YOU FOR BEING A PART OF THIS IMPORTANT WORK! please keep an eye on this site, and we’ll update you with developments and information.