Sustainable Preservation Practices—Series II Webinars

The NEH-funded Sustainable Preservation Practices—Series II workshops are over but there is still time to sign up for the webinar series. The webinars are FREE – simply visit the project website at and click on the “Webinar Registration”  tab. There are nine webinars, each presented on a Wednesday between January and September 2013 from 2:00 to 3:30 EST. 

January 9, 2013: The Evolution of New Standards—Defining an Optimal & Sustainable Preservation Environment in the 21st Century

  • The last 20 years of research on environment and material decay
  • Why the old rules (70°/50% and flat lining) don’t work anymore
  • How heat and humidity affect long term collection preservation
  • Equilibration rates
  • Manage seasonal highs and lows, avoid extremes


February 6, 2013: Dealing with Winter Dryness

  • The effect of low humidity levels on collections
  • Ways to control low humidity
  • Equilibration times
  • Answers to your questions


March 6, 2013: Understand the Role of Temperature, Relative Humidity, and Dew Point in Creating a Sustainable Preservation Environment

  • Explanation of dew point
  • What determines dew point temperature and how it is adjusted by mechanical systems
  • Relationship between Temperature – Relative Humidity – Dew Point
  • Why the environment you can achieve is determined by the dew point
  • Using dew point to improve environmental data analysis


April 3, 2013: The Fundamentals of HVAC – What Shapes the Storage Environment

  • Influence of regional / local climate
  • Importance of the building envelope
  • Basics of HVAC systems – “The Loop”
  • Where the energy goes
  • Working as a team to get to know the capabilities of your HVAC system and define an optimal environment for your institution

May 1, 2013: Best Practices for Collecting and Analyzing Environmental Data

  • Importance of collecting data
  • Basics of Data Analysis
  • Various modes of decay
  • Meaning and origin of Preservation Metrics™
  • Taking the long term view


June 5, 2013: Dealing with Summer Heat & Humidity

  • The effect of heat and humidity on collections
  • Ways to control heat and humidity
  • Equilibration times
  • Answers to your questions


July 10, 2013: Investigate your HVAC System & Identify Potential Energy Savings – Guest Speaker Peter Herzog, Herzog/Wheeler & Associates, Energy Management Consultant

  • Understand your HVAC system components
  • Create diagrams and cartoons
  • Where to look for energy savings
  • Identify and correct sub-optimal operations
  • Answers to your questions


August 7, 2013: Practical Approaches to Environmental Control for Small Institutions – Guest speaker, Richard Kerschner, Director of Preservation and Conservation, Shelburne Museum, Shelburne, Vermont

  • Reduce environmental problems at the source – dust, moisture, heat, and light
  • Environmental conditions that historic buildings can support
  • Conservation heating to reduce high and low RH
  • Conservation ventilation to reduce high RH
  • The preservation power of cold temperatures


September 4, 2013: Sustainable Preservation Practices

  • Form an environmental management team
  • Key team activities
  • Institutionalize the process
  • Review environmental data, HVAC operation and energy saving opportunities
  • Examples from field experience
  • Answers to your questions