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The Childrens Discovery Museum in downtown Normal is teaching adults as well as youngsters by showing how to use energy-efficient and environmentally friendly options in a building.

Its efforts earned the building a silver rating for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design from the U.S. Green Buildings Council.

The Normal facility was the first children's museum to receive such recognition - another feather in its cap.

Among the actions that contributed to the certification were extensive use of materials with recycled content, obtaining materials within 500 miles of the project and recycling construction waste. The building also includes a highly energy efficient heating/cooling system.

A lot of time-consuming paperwork was necessary to obtain certification. But efforts such as Normal's could inspire others to follow the example.

As these "extra" steps become routine, no paperwork will be necessary and society will benefit from conserving energy and diverting material from landfills through recycling and use of recycled materials.

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