Amplifying Library Stories: How Libraries are Taking Climate Action

In the leadup to the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26), IFLA asked the Standing Committee of the Environment Sustainability and Libraries Section (ENSULIB) to share examples of libraries educating, connecting and empowering their communities to take climate action.

We were happy to share some guest articles on IFLA’s Policy and Advocacy blog to highlight library initiatives that promote climate action and empowerment in their communities.

 Green FUBib: Sustainability at the University Library

This article offers a look at the GreenFUBib group, a permanent working group that is committed to promoting sustainable action in everyday library life at the University Library of the Freie Universität Berlin.

“GreenFUBib wants to contribute to filling the strategic terms of sustainability and responsibility with life in everyday library activities. In line with the 17 global sustainability goals, it keeps not only the ecological, but also the economic, social and cultural dimensions in mind.”

The working group seeks to address the following questions through their activities:

  • Where can something be done for sustainability and climate protection in the everyday work at the library?
  • Which measures are low-threshold and effective?
  • Which ideas can be implemented for all, or at least most, library locations?

Readers can find an overview of activities carried out by the GreenFUBib group, including choosing more sustainable library practices, like finding plastic-free options, organising educational events, and establishing a library garden. The author also offers a look at future plans on the group, and partners within the university community with whom the working group cooperates to achieve their goals.

This article could be a helpful reference for those who might be interested in establishing similar working groups in their libraries, or in implementing more sustainable everyday library practices.

Contributed by Janet Wagner, Librarian at the Universitätsbibliothek der Freien Universität Berlin (Germany).

Read the full article here: Green FUBib: Sustainability at the University Library

Climate Change in the Spotlight of RECIDA, the Spanish Network of Green Libraries

This article offers a glimpse into recent actions of the Spanish Network of Green Libraries (RECIDA).

This includes participation in the 12th Seminar of Environmental Documentation Centers and Protected Natural Areas, held in October 2021. This Seminar brought together state and regional institutions, universities, researchers, representatives of natural spaces and NGOs in a multi-stakeholder forum for collaboration and exchanges through the RECIDA network.

RECIDA, the Spanish network of green libraries, has been working for sustainability for 20 years. Included in RECIDA’s Action Plan are actions to raise awareness and mitigate climate changes and work towards impacting on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Some experiences highlighted by the RECIDA network during this conference which implement their Action Plan include:

  • Establishing reading clubs in environmental information centers which introduce environmental reading material to the public and raise awareness of the climate emergency
  • The initiative Literary Ecomenu, which encourages users to read, gaze, feel and marvel at nature through words and books.
  • Creation of educational materials for eco-social education aimed at addressing social, economic and ecological challenges

Readers may be interested in the approach of this network, which highlights how library and information professionals can have an impact on climate empowerment. In addition to ideas for action, this article also provides resources shared during the RECIDA network’s recent conference. Further, it provides an example of a multistakeholder approach to integrating libraries in climate action – especially through establishing relationships with academia, other NGOs, and government agencies, especially representing national parks.

Contributed by Rosario Toril Moreno, Documentalist at the National Center of Environmental Education, (Spain).

Read the full article here: Climate Change in the Spotlight of RECIDA, the Spanish Network of Green Libraries

Green Library Awards

During IFLA’s engagement in COP26 (read more on that here), we also drew inspiration from recent winners and runners-up of the IFLA Green Library Awards.

Although we only had time to share a few during COP26 events, we invited the audience to explore the many more examples of excellent library initiatives available on our website.

Have you revisited the Green Library Awards lately? Find inspiration here: IFLA Green Library Awards.

Do you have a similar example to share? Please reach out: claire.mcguire@ifla.org

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