When a famous coal museum wanted to save some money on its electricity bill, it turned to the obvious power source. Yes, Wales' Big Pit National Coal Mining Museum has installed 200 solar panels on its roof.
The panels are expected to save the museum some $650,000 over the next 25 years, the trade magazine Renewable Energy World reported Monday. Not a bad deal for an up-front cost of about $115,000. "Coal is such an important part of Wales’ heritage, and yet green energy will play a major part in its future," the museum's manager told the magazine. "A solar powered coal-mining museum is a fantastic way to celebrate this national journey."
Big Pit shut down in 1980 and reopened three years later as "a living, breathing reminder of the coal industry in Wales and the people and society it created," according to the museum's website. UNESCO named it a World Heritage Site in 2000.
Philip Bump of the environmental blog Grist suggests that the United States could stand to turn some of its own coal mines into museums: "See how life used to be, kids, in the terrible times of yesteryear."
TODAY IN SLATE
I was hit by a teacher in an East Texas public school. It taught me nothing.
Chief Justice John Roberts Says $1,000 Can’t Buy Influence in Congress. Looks Like He’s Wrong.
After This Merger, One Company Could Control One-Third of the Planet's Beer Sales
Hidden Messages in Corporate Logos
If You’re Outraged by the NFL, Follow This Satirical Blowhard on Twitter
Giving Up on Goodell
How the NFL lost the trust of its most loyal reporters.