Sustainability and bees

The Swedish Museums of World Culture are committed to the UN Sustainable Development Goals in a number of ways. The goals, often referred to as the SDGs, consist of 17 goals that were adopted by world leaders in the UN Summit in 2015. The SDGs are part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. You can find more detailed information about target goals and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development on the website of the UN Development Programme: http://www.undp.org/content/undp/en/home/sustainable-development-goals.html

Our focus on sustainability is integrated throughout the organization. It is accessible to our visitors through exhibitions, public events and program activities at our museums. But we also work actively behind the scenes to continuously evaluate and improve the social, environmental and economic accountability in our processes of purchase and procurement, energy efficiency, transports, travel and how we dispose of our waste.

A minor, but very important, part of the sustainability efforts of the Museums of World Culture are the bee hives placed outside The Museum of World Culture in Gothenburg and The Museum of Ethnography in Stockholm. We have chosen to illustrate them with the goal no 15 of the SDGs, the one about the life on land.

Together with other insects, bees pollinate flowers and plants, enabling them to carry fruit that humans and animals can eat. About one third of the fruit and vegetables that we eat are the result of pollination by bees and bumblebees.

The population of pollinating insects in the world is decreasing, partly due to climate change and pesticides. By keeping bees we help strengthen the population, so the bees can carry on with their important work.

Domestic bees produce honey which is harvested in the fall. Part of the harvest is left behind as a winter food supply for the bees. The honey extracted from our bee hives has been produced by the bees' work in the surroundings. The honey will soon be available in the museum shops.

Our bee hives are from Biman and are cared for by local beekeepers, who make sure the bees stay healthy and that they don't swarm away to other locations.