Designs Living Museum Ecosystem Initiatives on Climate Resilience and Ocean Conservation

mātā bhūmiḥ putro’haṃ pṛthivyāḥ The Earth is my mother and I am her child.

– Atharvaveda 12.1.12

SAN FRANCISCO, CA, USA, October 31, 2021 / – The 26th “Conference of the Parties” scheduled for October 31-November 12 in Glasgow, at the Scottish Events Campus by the River Clyde, often referred to as COP26 will be held within the framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC). What began in 1992 has since gained momentum, visibility and voice to break environmental policy paralysis and urge governments to take decisive and tangible action.

The US withdrawal from the landmark COP 21 Paris climate deal under the Trump administration and the return to the deal by the current Biden administration will no doubt be backed by bold initiatives to reduce carbon emissions , among others. As negotiations for the Paris Agreement began in Durban, South Africa, during COP17 with the establishment of the ad hoc working group, the UNFCCC agreed to establish a working group to negotiate legal instruments. enforceable by 2015 at COP21 to enter into force by 2020. Interestingly, 55 parties responsible for 55% of global greenhouse gas emissions have ratified the instruments and agreed to the principles of the Agreement of Paris to prevent a rise in temperature above 1.5 degrees Celsius by 2030. The Covid crises have impacted and postponed much of the speech until the next meeting of the spirits in Glasgow. So it becomes quite clear that more and more people need to be made aware of the impending climate change and then start thinking about resilience. This is where new museums and exhibition experiences are springing up to bridge the communication gap in different parts of the world.

San Francisco, a city that gave birth to the United Nations, is now leading the way to a “united nature” with the unveiling of the vision for the world’s first living museum dedicated to climate resilience and ocean conservation. The $ 260 million transformation of the Smithsonian Affiliate Aquarium, which has been in existence for 25 years, has been hailed by First Lady Dr Jill Biden as an important generational step in the right direction to educate and inspire us to to act. The 160,000 square foot iridescent bio-mimetic architecture is inspired by fish scales, mounds of Ohlone seashells and undulating ocean waves. Located a mile and a half from historic Alcatraz Prison, the Climate Ecotarium sits on a leafy 3-acre complex integrated with exhibits and powered by batteries, photo-bioreactors, wind, and waves. Even though the meta-narrative engages the voices of Native Americans as pioneers in environmental stewardship, the Living Museum engages Silicon Valley’s technological talent in a series of learning platforms, machine learning tools and artificial intelligence, which has gained momentum in non-contact learning post-covid environments. At the heart of the Climate Museum is an upgraded saltwater aquarium that offers the ocean like a lens to a living laboratory. Meanwhile, in the Caribbean, a $ 132 million national oceanarium is in the works. Inspired by the geometry of the ocean, the organic shapes of coral reefs and sea urchins, this incredible facility sits at the edge of the beautiful ocean coastline of Montego Bay, Jamaica. With direct lines of sight to the cruise ship terminal, three volumetric shells rise out of the ocean, dragging with them the rising tide of a kinetic waterfall, rolling down the panoramic sky view of the “Blue Hope” restaurant . The mystical waterfall draws visitors arriving from the oceanfront via water taxis, inviting a magical ride in the glass-pod lifts leading to the huge aquarium and living museum.

The 2.2 million gallon aquarium will hold approximately 30,000 animals and 300 species in immersive saltwater cones juxtaposed with freshwater tanks, surrounded by attractive exhibits, with a solar-powered rooftop gazebo . A more spectacular project is taking place in the ocean city of Bergen in Norway, which will pay tribute to ocean conservation, climate resilience, and future technologies ranging from environmentally friendly transportation practices to purging ocean debris.

On the eve of COP 26, as 166 world leaders meet with 30,000 delegates and around 100,000 demonstrators, a unifying commitment to a way of life that minimizes the use of plastics, pesticides, and air pollution disregarding industry standards and other consumer habits, burning fossil fuels, dumping chemicals and solid waste into rivers, streams, lagoons and oceans is the only way forward. With collective determination, the tides can be turned to nurture nature for a better future. It’s in our DNA.

Vicki de Witt
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