How Green is My Library? by Sam McBane Mulford

By Sam McBane Mulford

While there's a huge spectrum of ecological sophistication inside libraries national and a few areas are on the vanguard of sustainable of sustainable layout and operations, others are only starting or have not begun to combine fabrics recycling into their day-by-day perform. a number of jurisdictions are mandating LEED qualified structures and carbon-neutral practices, whereas others don't but have those techniques on their radars.

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In much the same way you felt you needed a guide to being green when you bought or borrowed this book, people in your community may be floundering in the sea of green and becoming fatigued. Sharing your experience, and developing services, collections, and programming to address what is or could be happening locally are the types of invaluable service your library can provide. What’s in It for Us? The possible benefits of being green described below are organized into categories created by the USGBC and used in its LEED program.

Your motivations for being green may also be mandated. Many communities (towns, cities, counties, and districts) have created green and sustainable goals, and much of the recent swell in green construction and municipal operational practices is driven by local government initiatives. San Jose, California, a city with a geographic footprint of almost 180 square miles and a current population of almost 1 million, shaped a new green vision in early 2008 which formalized an unofficial initiative within the city of the last decade and half.

The Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Main Library, a joint facility with San Jose State University that opened on August 1, 2003, is being retrofitted to become LEED-certified for existing buildings. The major change will include replacing lighting fixtures and lamps with more energy-efficient models. San Jose expects to realize its return on investment, or time to payback, after two to three years. This includes a subsidy from Pacific Gas and Electric, which the library expects to be approximately $300,000.

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