Building for the Future: Going Green at Mystic Seaport

As humans are now more cognizant of how our actions affect the environment, scientists continue to find ways of reducing our impact on Mother Nature. Sustainable energy sources and environmentally-friendly practices are becoming more widely adopted for homes, businesses and entire communities. Mystic Seaport is proud that our Thompson Exhibition Building incorporates several key environmentally-sensitive and efficient elements such as geothermal wells and permeable pavement.

Geothermal systems use considerably less energy than traditional heating and cooling systems. This is because they work by using the shallow ground’s natural temperature, which typically remains constant except during periods of extreme heat or cold. In the winter, the heat pump transfers heat from the ground to the building. In the summer, the process is reversed. In addition to being environmentally sensitive, this type of system saves money on heating costs in the long-run.

Permeable pavement helps decrease storm water runoff and improve water quality. Because permeable pavement is porous it allows for storm water to flow through. Any storm water that does run off is collected in an underground water filtration system before it goes into the Mystic River.

These green initiatives are part of our larger overall effort to keep Mystic Seaport a leader in local environmental stewardship.

Sources:

National Renewable Energy Laboratory: https://www.nrel.gov/workingwithus/re-geo-heat-pumps.html

US Department of Energy: https://energy.gov/sites/prod/files/guide_to_geothermal_heat_pumps.pdf

Clemson University: http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/water/resources_stormwater/introduction_to_porous_pavement.html

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