Earth Day @ your library

Tomorrow April 22 is officially Earth Day (though some places like my university celebrate it today!)  Earth Day was first celebrated on April 22, 1970,to  promote awareness and appreciation for the Earth’s environment. For information and ideas on celebrating Earth Day visit

Some library ideas:

  • presentations by local groups on climate change/initiatives/etc,
  • promote your online resources so users don’t have to drive gain access,
  • eco-storytellers,
  • screening and discussion of environmental documentary,
  • plant a tree(s) or gardens – a children’s garden;
  • host a used book sale,
  • sell backyard compost bins and rain barrels to library users,
  • offer recyclable crafts activities and a presentation on learning how to recycle
  • a “Wait-Wait-Don’t-Toss-That” event (how to reuse items),
  • collection of recyclable materials/shred-a-ton/sneakers-for-turf collection,
  • quiz/contest with prizes from local eco-friendly companies,
  • community expo of local green organizations,
  • potted flower and herb giveaway/fundraiser,
  • Recycling Our Reads” or book swamp,
  • howto/DIY workshops,
  • farmers market, games/crafts/stories for kids,
  • geocaching for teens,
  • create recycled jewelry,
  • ArtCan! (sculpture building competition of canned/boxed goods – then donated to local food bank)
  • reading of The Lorax by Seuss & plant a sunflower seed to take home,
  • trash clean up, invasive weed clean up,
  • composting workshop,
  • solar energy generated stage for local music
  • .. and much more!!

UNEP Research Reports

United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) has published some freely available research reports worth adding to your collections. UNEP works collaboratively to promote the wise use and sustainable development of the global environment. This recent report is called Towards a Green Economy: Pathways to Sustainable Developmentand Poverty Eradication – A Synthesis for Policy Makers, which can be viewed online, searched, downloaded, viewed on a mobile device and shared.   There are numerous others available here. There are numerous other reports available here.

Raj Patel @ ACRL

It was refreshing to hear a sustainability activist academic Raj Patel speak at the national Association College and Research Libraries biannual conference.  Raj Patel is UC Berkeley’s Center for African Studies, an Honorary Research Fellow at the School of Development Studies at the University of KwaZulu-Natal, and a fellow at The Institute for Food and Development Policy, and spoke of global economic systems of interdependence and the international food crisis.  He has written over 5 books including the one he promoted at this talk The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy. Check out the video and a good purchase for your library perhaps.