Turner Contemporary and the Environment

At Turner Contemporary, we are on a mission to protect the planet from the pressing environmental challenges it faces – from pollution and habitat destruction to loss of biodiversity and resource depletion. The climate emergency requires immediate action to address rising sea levels, more frequent and severe natural disasters, and altering ecosystems.

Located on the breathtaking coast of Thanet, our gallery is uniquely positioned to support individuals and communities in acting on these issues. We are committed to minimising our environmental impact, preserving, and safeguarding cultural and natural heritage, and empowering audiences to contribute to a sustainable future.

Progress To Date

We have already achieved zero waste to landfill, implemented 100% low-energy LED lighting, and optimised temperature and humidity conditions in our galleries to conserve energy. We have significantly reduced our carbon footprint since the gallery opened in 2011.

We collaborate with organisations such as the Gallery Climate Coalition and Julie’s Bicycle. We will be working with RISE UP. CLEAN UP. for regular beach cleans for our staff in 2024. We have also established Thanet’s first Teachers’ Environmental Network and will continue to work with schools on environmental projects.

There is lots more we would like to do so if you would like to join forces with us in the fight against the climate emergency, don’t hesitate to get in touch. Together with artists, educators, environmentalists, suppliers, scientists, and innovators, we can create a brighter, more sustainable future for all.

Our Commitments

To minimise our negative impact on the environment

  • We send zero waste to landfill
  • We reuse or share with our community as much material as possible from each exhibition
  • We are reducing the energy consumption of our air handling systems that maintain environmental conditions in gallery spaces



  • In our shop, we reuse paper packing void filler for e-commerce
  • We ask customers if they would like a receipt before printing
  • We have removed printed orders from e-commerce
  • We work with suppliers to reduce single-use plastic in our retail supply chain



  • In our café we ensure that catering is sourced locally to reduce emissions from transport and processing and we are reducing the use of meat and dairy
  • We will incentivise visitors to use reusable cups for takeaway drinks


Advocacy and Education

  • We are creating incentives for schools to travel to the gallery using public transport
  • We are creating resources for school students to use inside and outside the gallery that highlight our unique coastline and the threat it faces as a result of the climate crisis
  • We are partnering with Windmill Community Gardens to support Portfolio 2024
  • We will develop school’s programmes supporting young people to act on their concerns for the natural environment
  • We are sourcing materials for workshops sustainably, reusing materials or purchasing from local suppliers as far as possible


Safeguarding Natural Heritage

  • We are organising regular beach cleans for staff in partnership with RISE UP. CLEAN UP.
  • We are developing a staff garden at the gallery and work to develop gardens locally that promote biodiversity


Sustainable Tourism

  • We are working in partnership with Southeastern and our leadership of the Community Rail Partnership to continue developing a programme of activity promoting sustainable travel in Thanet

Partnered With

Gallery Climate Coalition