We believe in making sustainability a significant aspect of our strategic initiatives and we are in the process of implementing a series of goals to further climate justice within our institution and become a better cultural role model. In accordance with the Museum’s commitment to the environment, we have recently developed a sustainability program, which we hope can also be a resource for other museums. Working in support of the Paris Climate Agreement, we recognize it is vital to reduce the world’s carbon emissions by 50% and substantially reduce waste by 2030.
Exploring the relationship between art and the natural environment is a central thematic principle that drives everything we do at the Nevada Museum of Art, including our collections and exhibition programming, which thematically probe diverse facets of the subject. Furthermore, it is part of our origin story, given our co-founder James Edward Church Jr., was a humanities professor and climate scientist known for developing innovative techniques to measure the amount of water in snowpack for supply forecasting, on the nearby Mount Rose Summit (elevation 10,776 ft). The climate is also embedded into our graphic identity, whether it’s our logo that is based on the geo-thermal formations underneath the museum, or the thermostat reading that appears embedded in the distinctive emblem on our website. Significantly, we are also the only museum in the country to have a Center for Art + Environment—a growing archive and research center devoted to the practice, study, and awareness of creative interactions between people and their natural, built, and virtual environments.
Living in Reno, we recognize, too, that we have a vested interest in the issue of climate change, given Reno was designated the city with the fastest-warming climate in the nation. According to Climate Central (a non-profit research group), “Since 1970, summer temperatures in Reno, Nevada, have risen 10.9 degrees.” As a result, we are committed to assessing the leadership role we play in impacting our own micro-climate by reducing our emissions and inspiring our regional community to take further action as well.
The development of this action plan has been a year-long journey, while participating in the Ki Futures program—a comprehensive, international coaching and training program designed for the cultural sector by the non-profit organization Ki Culture.
We would like to thank the Teiger Foundation and the Helen Frankenthaler Foundation for their financial support of the Nevada Museum of Art’s sustainability initiatives.
The sustainability action plan and statement has been developed by the Museum’s Green Team which includes the following staff members: Bonnie Blair, Savannah Chappell, Apsara DiQuinzio, Sara Frantz, Chelsey Lundin, Chris Martin, and Ela Zawadzka.