Category: Libraries

State to outfit four southern Brooklyn libraries with solar backup systems for emergency use

Read the full story at Brooklyn Paper.

The Brooklyn Public Library is outfitting the roofs of four southern Brooklyn literary emporiums with solar energy backup systems that guarantee the lights stay lit — and providing the area with much-needed safe havens during emergencies.

Evanston Public Library hosts virtual Climate Resilient Communities Series

Inspired by the  ALA Resilient Communities: Libraries Respond to climate change Grant that was awarded to the Evanston Public Library in the last quarter of 2020, this series of presentations, film discussions, community conversations and hands-on learning kits focuses on the causes and effects of climate change, as well as its intersection with race, gender and other identities.

The goal of the series is to inspire participants into climate action by providing participants with a better understanding of the science behind climate change and the social, ecological and political consequences of its impacts, while offering effective tools to work towards solutions

Plant yourself a great home garden with the Urbana Free Library’s Seed Library

If you live in the Champaign-Urbana area and want to improve your home garden, you can borrow seeds from the Urbana Free Library’s Seed Library.

A seed library is a place where you can “check out” seeds and bring back new seeds from your harvest. You take seeds from the lending library, plant them, grow the plants, let some go to seed, and then return some of these next-generation seeds for others to borrow. They also accept store bought seeds.

For more information, including a list of currently available seeds and instructions for “returning” or donating seeds, visit the Library’s web site.

Webinar: Citizen Science Month in Your Library or Community-Based Organization

Jan 22, 2021, 1-2 pm CST
Register here.

Citizen Science Month (April 2021) is a great time to bring citizen science — public engagement in real scientific research — to your library or community-based organization (CBO). Join this webinar to learn about Citizen Science Month ( featured projects and resources showcased by SciStarter, Arizona State University, the Network of the National Library of Medicine, the All of Us Research program, and other champions of Citizen Science Month.

See also: The Library & Community Guide to Citizen Science

Webinar: Teaching Environmental Justice with Documentaries

Dec 8, 2020, 1 pm CST
Register here.

How will Kisilu Musya, a farmer in rural Kenya, cope with drought and flash floods brought on by climate change? Can a Black community in Texas put an end to toxic emissions from a nearby oil refinery? How can we protect forests, rebuild ecosystems and restore biodiversity? What is the real cost of fast fashion and iphones? These questions and more are explored in this documentary collection.

The global future we face is both exciting and challenging. Rapidly changing landscapes of regional and global systems of power, knowledge, and exchange confront us all — probably in ways we have yet to fully comprehend. From this global perspective, the need for environmental literacy intertwined with various other kinds of understanding is deep and profound.

An ACRL Webinar with free teacher’s guides, this panel discussion will provide insight structuring classes around documentary films and screening documentaries in campus-wide events.

Discussion topics include:

  • Defining environmental justice
  • Climate justice as a galvanizing topic on campus
  • Discussing difficult topics and footage in class – how do you help students maintain optimism?
  • How environmental justice touches on and even pervades a variety of subject areas

The session includes numerous clips from Global Environmental Justice Documentaries to give viewers a sense of the scope and depth of the collection, as well as recorded interviews with the project’s curators.

Download the teacher’s guide for Thank You for the Rain and others here:

Books fill the aisles at this supermarket turned library

Read the full story at I Love Libraries.

When locals head to the former Merchants’ Square supermarket in Carmel, Indiana, they’re not stocking up on groceries. Instead, they’re there to check out books from the temporarily relocated Carmel Clay Public Library (CCPL), which has ingeniously repurposed the vacant store space to house their collection while their main branch is under renovation.

Lisle Library District earns recognition from SCARCE for sustainability efforts

Via the Lisle Library District.

On September 16, 2020, the Lisle Library District (LLD) was officially awarded an Earth Flag by SCARCE.  SCARCE Executive Director, Kay McKeen and DuPage County Board member, Liz Chaplin, attended the LLD Board of Trustees meeting to present the Flag and read the offical Resolution of Commendaton from DuPage County Chairman, Daniel Cronin.

To earn the Earth Flag, the LLD had to achieve a number of objectives.  Ms. Chaplin read aloud some of those accomplishments: 

I am so happy to be here tonight to present the Earth Flag Resolution. Earning the Earth Flag is a huge accomplishment that takes a lot of work and dedication by the staff. I want the staff and the community to know what a great accomplishment this is and everyone should be very proud. I’m going to read off all the work the staff has done to receive the Earth Flag…

  • Comprehensive Recycling Program
  • Staff Education
  • Patron Education
  • Educated patrons on proper recycling practices – hosted the Where Is Away? exhibit
  • The Library has upgraded all its’ lighting to LEDs, T- 8s, T-5s and CFLs
  • The Library has a cool roof to help with the urban heat island effect
  • The Library also recycles electronics, scrap metal and batteries
  • Updated their HVAC system in the Fall of 2019
  • Has syringe collection bins in their bathrooms for staff & patrons
  • The Library donates books to Better World Books
  • Has used book sales
  • Handles hazardous waste appropriately
  • Uses eco-friendly deicer
  • Library employees use reusable mugs, dishes & utensils
  • Has reusable bag available for patrons to use
  • Library has all low flow toilets & faucets with automatic sensors

Research Shows Virus Undetectable on Five Highly Circulated Library Materials After Three Days

In the first phase of a project to disseminate and develop science-based information about how materials can be handled to mitigate exposure to staff and visitors, scientists have found that the virus SARS-CoV-2 that causes COVID-19 is not detectable on five common library materials after three days.

The findings are part of the REopening Archives, Libraries, and Museums (REALM) Project designed to generate scientific information to support the handling of core museum, library, and archival materials as these institutions begin to resume operations and reopen to the public. The first phase of the research is focusing on commonly found and frequently handled materials, especially in U.S. public libraries.

Over the past few weeks, scientists at Battelle tested the virus on a variety of surfaces, in environments with standard temperature and relative humidity conditions typically found in air-conditioned office space. Materials tested in phase one included the cover of hardcover books (buckram cloth), the cover of softback books, plain paper pages inside a closed book, mylar protective book cover jackets, and plastic DVD cases. Battelle tests found the virus undetectable after one day on the covers of hardback and softback books as well as the DVD case. The virus was undetectable on the paper inside of a book and mylar book jackets after three days. “It’s below the limit of detection on our viability assay,” said Battelle Principal Research Scientist Will Richter.

Lab testing of physical items followed literature reviews conducted by Battelle to help define the scope of the project’s research and the information needs of libraries, archives, and museums. Last week, the REALM Project released “Systematic Literature Review of SARS-CoV-2: Spread, Environmental Attenuation, Prevention, and Decontamination,” prepared by Battelle. This is an in-depth review of published literature on virus transmission, attenuation, and decontamination methods that can inform discussion and decisions about operations in archives, libraries, and museums.

Parks and Recreation and Libraries Working Together During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Read the full post from the National Recreation and Park Association.

As the COVID-19 pandemic has spread throughout the United States, I have been actively tracking how public libraries have responded. Right out of the gate, I found park and recreation agencies collaborating with public libraries for a unified response. In Oak Park, Illinois, on March 11, 2020, the village’s two school districts joined forces with Oak Park Public Library and the Park District of Oak Park to make the joint decision to close and suspend all programming. Rather than a scattered response emanating from different agencies, the schools, libraries and parks came together to have one unified message.

Libraries virtual exhibition highlights human impact on our planet

Read the full story from Penn State University.

To coincide with the 50th anniversary of the first Earth Day in April 1970, a new online exhibition, “Earth Archives: Stories of Human Impact,” explores the intersection of the environment, human activity, and the documentary record.

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