Sustainable development

For many years now, sustainability have been integrated into everything we do at Stundars and we are continuously striving to evolve and deepen our environmental work. A milestone in this process was reached in December 2022, when Stundars had successfully applied a environmental management system and received the certificate EcoCompass from The Finnish Association for Nature Conservation. In april 2023 Stundars became certified as a sustainable travel destination through Visit Finland’s programme Sustainable Travel Finland (STF).

Gunilla Sand is the museum manager at Stundars and she sees sustainability as a vital part of the museum work in general.

“As an open-air museum we preserve and display the crafts, the built heritage and the traditions of the cultural heritage of the Swedish-speaking parts of Ostrobothnia. Museum work is not only about the past, it is just as important to exhibit, explain and give our cultural heritage meaning for us today. The certification has been helpful in visualising this process.”

The environmental management certification process has been done alongside several other tourism destinations in the region and with Visit Vaasa as a driving force. Stundars’ building manager Jonathan Hemming has also been appointed manager for the environmental work at Stundars, and he is pleased that Stundars has reached such an important milestone in this area.

”This is indeed an important acknowledgement for the environmental work that we have been doing for a long time. But the extensive review we now have completed have given us new perspectives and improvements that we will take with us when we continue to make Stundars even more sustainable.”

Sustainable development is becoming more and more important in the tourist business, and in a few years Visit Finland will no longer promote destinations that are not STF-certified. Stundars is off to an early start, and hopes that other tourist destinations in the region will soon join in so that Ostrobothnia can be considered an attractive destination in the future too.

Stundars’ Environmental Promise

In our operations as an open-air museum, our task is to preserve and research the culture and traditions of Swedish-speaking Ostrobothnia. But we also aim to promote biodiversity in nature, circular economy, and a sustainable future. Together with Sustainable Travel Finland and the EcoCompass we have been applying an environmental management system (EMS) and have been certified accordingly. Here are some of our focus points for the current three-year period:

We choose goods and services we use carefully.

When we purchase items or materials, for example for the maintenance of our architectural heritage, we always choose primarily environmentally friendly, locally produced goods or services. We use our building parts and materials thoughtfully and reuse or resell what we don’t need ourselves.

We improve on the energy efficiency of our buildings

We fix thermal bridges and heat leakage, and lower the temperature in spaces we don’t use at the moment. Some of our buildings are heated with renewable bioenergy from the local district heating network.

We are pioneers and show the way to a sustainable development

We teach students about how you can live on fewer resources, hold lectures on how to make your house withstand another hundred years of wear, and we talk about or environmental work with our visitors and business partners.

We care for our local environment

Through securing naturally non-toxic environments for our native flora and insects, and by mechanically eliminate invasive species, we are helping the wealth of species to recover. We want to turn our museum village into an oasis for biodiversity.

Sustainable tourism

In april 2023 we were granted the label Sustainable Travel Finland as a recognition of valuable and long-term work for sustainable tourism. Sustainable travel Finland is a national travel programme managed by Visit Finland. It takes into account environmental, socio-cultural, and economics sustainability.

More about Visit Finland in this link.