The UK Science Museum has “doubled” its sponsorship of climate exhibitions by fossil fuel companies, activists say, by receiving funding from a subsidiary of the Adani Group.
Adani is a conglomerate with significant stakes in coal, the most polluting fossil fuel. the Energy Revolution Gallery, which will open in 2023, will be sponsored by Adani’s Green Energy division.
The museum said the gallery “will explore the latest climate science and the energy revolution needed to reduce global dependence on fossil fuels.” Dame Mary Archer, President of the Science Museum Group, said: “This gallery will take a truly global perspective on the world’s most pressing challenge. We are very grateful to Adani Green Energy for the significant financial support. “
Activists called the decision “astonishing” and “reckless.” The Science Museum has drawn strong criticism for endorsement deals with oil and gas giants Shell, BP and Equinor. The Shell deal included a contractual clause that commits the museum so as not to “damage the goodwill or reputation” of the oil company.
Former museum director, climate scientist Prof Chris Rapley, resigned from his advisory board on October 2 on the subject. The museum will host the government’s Global Investment Summit on Tuesday, as part of preparations for the crucial Cop26 climate summit later in the month in Glasgow.
Adani has said that he wants to be the one largest renewable energy company in the world by 2030. But he faces opposition in India and Australia for plans to expand its coal operations. Gautam Adani, president of the group, said: “The new gallery will explore how we can drive the future through low-carbon technologies.”
Culture Unstained’s Jess Worth said: “Surprisingly, the museum’s management has doubled and hired Adani, a coal conglomerate, to sponsor a gallery on the energy transition. Their enthusiasm for fossil fuel associations has turned the controversy into a credibility crisis, and they must be held accountable for their reckless decisions. “
Adrian Burragubba, a traditional indigenous owner of land chosen by Adani for a huge coal mine in Australia, said: “By putting this company on a pedestal, the Science Museum is complicit in Adani’s violation of our human rights and the destruction of our ancestral lands. “
Sir Ian Blatchford, Executive Director of the Museum of Science, said: “Adani Green Energy already has one of the largest renewable portfolios in the world and plans to invest $ 20 billion in clean energy over the next 10 years. And make no mistake, such massive investments are needed to move India from high-carbon to low-carbon energy while still meeting its growing energy needs. “
Shell’s sponsorship of the museum’s current climate exhibit, Our Future Planet, has been criticized by scientists, exhibition collaborators and Greta thunberg. On Sunday, protesters delivered a huge pile of garbage bags to the museum to protest coal ties.
George is Digismak’s reported cum editor with 13 years of experience in Journalism