Tag Archives: going green

Goin’ Green for Michigan Library Association

My panel proposal for the Michigan Library Association Annual Conference was accepted.  I’m happy to say the I will be joined by two top notch professionals – Joel Wiese and Christa Robinson – a husband and wife team who specialize in sustainable building and design practices. 

There are lots of libraries in Michigan making efforts to contribute to the green movement including:

Hastings Public Library – they recently installed Solar Panels and have many, many other great features related to their library and the building – they list them here.

Malletts Creek Branch of the Ann Arbor District Library won an award from the Michigan Division of the American Institute of Architecture as a shining example of sustainable architecture.

And libraries such as Canton Public Library are doing away with plastic or paper bags for books and encouraging patrons to purchase cloth bags from the library.  (The library does not make a profit from the sales – they’d rather help the environment!)

So, whether you’re a Michigan library or not, I’d love to hear what your library is doing to help the Green Movement!  What prompted the new green strategies at your library?  How did your staff/community receive the new efforts?  It doesn’t have to be a big thing…even if you just started recycling last week, I’d love to here.  So, please post a note…

Alternative Energy at the Library

I just got a $102.00 library fine.  I’m pissed, but will write about it later, because it will not be pleasant if I write it now.  Instead…

I’m going to tell you how I just pitched to my boss that my library should install vertical wind turbines.  Energy bills are crazy at this campus and interest in alternative energy is ramping up (again).  So, I see a win-win here…1) lower the energy bill and 2) get a bit of news coverage for an attempt to go green in a big way.

Now we certainly couldn’t power the whole place, but giving us a bit of an energy boost would be nice.  And seeing as how my particular library sits on the shore of a lake, there is a nice breeze coming in quite frequently.  Might as well take advantage of it.  (The hot air coming over from administration alone could power us for WEEKS!!! Did I just write that?????)

Other libraries are installing solar panels…like the Medicine Hat, Alberta Public Library, the Boulder, Colorado Public Library (1/3 of their power!  Holy Batteries, BATMAN!!!), and the Tompkins County, New York Library.

In line with this, I was just talking to a librarian who started selling canvas bags for her library.  Now, lots of places do that, but what they did was put very cool designs on the bags, and made their logo visible, but small and unintrusive.  People started buying them not only as book bags, but as cool gifts and totes.  I’m thinking that there have to be green groups that would be willing to provide a bit of cash to help towards the creation of such bags, if it means fewer people will use plastic.  If I can get a pic of their cool bags, I’ll post it.