News & Media
Human Impact Building now open
The Living Rainforest’s new Human Impact Building was officially opened on Tuesday March 21 2006.
With National Lottery funding from main benefactor the Millennium Commission and others including the European Community, the Living Rainforest is proud to announce that its new environmentally sustainable building is now open to the public.
The Millennium Commission unveiled a National Lottery Blue Plaque to mark the Lottery grant it awarded to redevelop the existing space into the new and exciting exhibition.
Part of the Human Impact Project, the building will allow visitors to explore man’s relationship with the environment and what we can all do as individuals to lessen our negative impact on the planet.
The attractive building is a testament to recycling and renewable sources. All the wood used is from sustainably managed forests, the roofing and flooring were made using natural or recycled rubber, and the insulation in the walls, roof and floor is made of recycled newspaper. The building is heated with renewable energy – local, sustainably-grown wood chips.
To celebrate the event, around 200 Blue Morpho (Morpho peleides) butterflies will be released into the Amazonica House. The butterflies were chosen because their name ‘Morpho’ means change or transformation. These butterflies are recognised for their vivid blue colour and are found in the depths of the rainforests in Central and South America.
“The Living Rainforest has undergone a huge transformation,” said Karl Hansen, director of The Living Rainforest. “The Human Impact project is a living, breathing example of what can be achieved with a little bit of thought and some intelligent investment.”
Judith Donovan CBE, Millennium Commissioner, said: “The Millennium Commission is proud to have supported The Living Rainforest with over £879,000 of Lottery grants. The Human Impact building provides a creative and engaging means to educate people about the impact they have on the environment.”
Throughout 2006 there will be various announcements and further additions as The Human Impact project evolves, including the UK’s largest poison frog exhibit and the Amazon River Aquarium, which will both be opening soon.
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