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"Going green," or becoming more environmentally conscious, has become a mounting international concern in recent decades. The increasing global consumption of finite resources has led to large-scale societal campaigns to heighten awareness about environmental issues and concerns. With interest in environmental sustainability on the rise, libraries are increasingly deciding to undertake their own green initiatives. And why not? Libraries that embrace greener practices reinforce "their roles as community/cultural centers that significantly and positively impact the quality of life of those they serve" (Mulford & Himmel, 2010). Additionally, green library initiatives are a wonderful means of building community partnerships, demonstrating effective leadership, and enhancing the library's public profile (Brodie, 2012). So what exactly does it mean to be a "green library"? The designation is difficult to define, but, generally speaking, libraries that implement green practices are committed to pursuing innovation, to minimizing waste, and, where possible, to adopting and promoting environmentally sound processes throughout their organizations (Schaper, 2010). While these aspirations are admirable, it is easy to lose sight of them, especially in times of widespread economic hardship and dwindling library budgets. In light of these difficulties, the challenge of optimizing library facilities, operations, and collections can seem overwhelming, and the potential costs can be intimidating. Contrary to these impressions, libraries can work toward a more sustainable future through relatively simple, inexpensive measures, and many changes can actually save money in the long term. This article outlines a variety of practical strategies for implementing greener practices within the context of budget limitations. Most of these strategies can be employed at minimal cost, and, taken together, they can serve as a powerful catalyst for change. Where there is a will, there is always a way, and getting creative is often the most effective way to stay within budget parameters!
Libraries, Library management, Sustainability
Fallik, S., Soper, D., & Sparks, K. (2012). Green Libraries on the Cheap. Pnla Quarterly. Retrieved from http://purl.flvc.org/fsu/fd/FSU_libsubv1_scholarship_submission_1892