Spark: new Australian Museum showcase on climate solutions
Sydney, 28 May 2021 – Did you know Australians lead the world in solar innovation and uptake of roof-top solar? Or that the world’s first domestic hydrogen battery, powering a house on a bucket of water a day, is an Australian invention? There are surprising advances across the country, in many fields, from clean energy to supporting biodiversity. From Thursday 3 June, the Australian Museum’s (AM) new exhibition, Spark, will showcase brilliant inventions by Australians tackling climate change.
AM Director and CEO Kim McKay AO said this exhibition will provide insight into the valuable work being done in Australia to solve the ever-evolving climate crisis.
“As trusted institutions, museums have a duty to communicate climate change to the public. Following the AM’s carbon neutral certification, Spark is an opportunity for us to share the innovative Australian-made inventions looking to reduce pollution, create affordable and clean energy and promote prosperity while protecting the planet,” McKay said.
The AM’s Manager of Climate Change Projects, and curator of Spark, Dr. Jenny Newell said Spark showcases the exciting ways people are working together across Australia to advance climate solutions.
“From the wisdom and work of our First Nations peoples to the extraordinary potential of the next generation, Spark offers the latest information and developments on clean transport and energy, algae technologies, regenerative agriculture, seaweed farms and biodiversity protection,” Newell said.
“We hope the exhibition inspires visitors – on site and online – to come on board with advancing these vital ways of caring for this land and each other,” Newell added.
Exhibition highlights include:
Solar Power – Australia has some of the best conditions for harnessing solar power and one of the highest uptakes of solar energy in the world. Discover how Australian inventors are making solar even more accessible and sustainable through more efficient silicon cells and transparent and flexible solar-collecting plastics, which will soon bring solar power more cheaply to more people in more places.
Wind Power – Wind became Australia’s leading clean energy source in 2019. Advancements in onshore, offshore and micro wind turbines are offering more energy security through droughts and supplying electricity to remote areas across the country. See wind turbines in the exhibition to learn about this renewable energy source.
Electric Transport – Electric vehicles are revving up and decreasing carbon emissions to create a greener future. A Dennis Savic Alpha motorbike - Australia’s first home-grown electric ride - will be on display in the exhibition to show how local innovators are making this technology more accessible.
Hydrogen Power – Hydrogen is an incredible energy source the world is starting to embrace. It is collected is by running an electric current through water. This clean energy can be safely stored and transported for use in homes and industry, trucks, planes and space rockets! A group of engineers including the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Sydney have created LAVO, the world’s first domestic hydrogen battery system. It uses a bucket of water to power your house for a day – check out one of the model units in the exhibition to learn more about this climate solution.
Cultural Burning – Caring for Country – First Nations peoples have lived in Australia for more than 60,000 years, maintaining a continuous and seamless connection with nature. Learn how traditional knowledge and methods can offer a guide to the survival of future generations.
Supporting Biodiversity – Protecting the richness of the living world is central to our life support system. Find out how you can create your own backyard habitat for wildlife and help regenerate our local ecosystem through two core soil samples.
Regenerative agriculture – Reducing chemicals and allowing natural systems to regenerate on farms creates healthy, living soils. See what Australian farmers are doing to reduce emissions, increase carbon draw down, produce healthier food and achieve higher yields.
Microalgae – Tiny algae are giving us new plastics, fuels, and impressive amounts of carbon capture. Delve into the many uses of this incredible resource and find out how it is being used in bioreactors that can capture as much carbon as a hectare of forest. A glowing green microalgae bioreactor tank from the Climate Change Cluster (C3) at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS) is on display. Bioreactors are being used by more businesses, even to capture the carbon created from brewing beer.
Seaweed Farms – Seaweed grows much faster than land plants. Uncover how seaweed’s super growing properties can be harnessed to remove billions of tonnes of CO2 from the atmosphere. Find out why there is a cow in the exhibition’s seaweed display! Sea Farm, Tasmania, are bringing a seaweed supplement to farms that stops livestock burping out the greenhouse gas methane.
Building Smarter – With increasing populations and sprawling development, we need to be looking at more sustainable ways of building. Engage with exciting new materials that revive waste and reduce emissions: designer tiles made from broken glass and textile scraps, as well as environmentally friendly concrete and ‘green steel.’
What: Spark Exhibition
When: Opens Thursday 3 June 2021
Where: Australian Museum, 1 William St, Sydney NSW 2010
For more information, visit: https://australian.museum/exhibition/spark/
Spark Media Pack and Images Available HERE
Facebook: @australianmuseum / Instagram: @australianmuseum / Twitter: @austmus
Farley Fitzgerald, Communications Advisor
T 0455 306 788
Claire Vince, Media Advisor
T 0468 726 910