Welcome to the Green Library website!
These sites promotes sustainable development and environmental work in Finnish public libraries, sharing also environmental information from the entire library field, developed environmental tools and training materials. These materials are free for use.
Please note that the pdf documents are not accessible.
Nordic Libraries for Sustainability, Vol 1
Carbon Footprint of Finnish Public Libraries 2019 and 2022 / Leila Sonkkanen & Harri Sahavirta
Hållbara bibblan / Victoria Lagerkvist, Sweden
The Sustainability Lab / Benjamin Mekki Wideroe, Norway
Fridge Movement / Hrönn Björgbinsdóttir, Iceland
The Nordic Library Associations on Sustainability in Libraries -panel
Sharp and Visible Environmental Work at Public Libraries Project (2023)
Sharp and Visible Environmental Work at Public Libraries (Yleisten kirjastojen ympäristötyö näkyväksi ja teräväksi) is a national research and training project managed by the Helsinki City Library and funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. It is aimed at promoting environmental awareness, carbon neutrality and the sharing economy of libraries. The project is based on a survey, carbon footprint measurements and the mapping of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) carried out by the Bringing Environmental Awareness of Public Libraries to the 2020s project (Yleisten kirjastojen ympäristötietoisuus 2020-luvulle, 2020–2021).
The project supports the objectives of the Ministry of Education and Culture’s Strategy 2030 to promote sustainable development measures, such as climate change mitigation, increased environmental awareness and an operating environment favourable for carbon neutrality and everyday solutions that support it. The project also promotes the aim of the Ministry of Education and Culture’s strategy to reform society through creative, inquiry-based and responsible action. In addition, the project contributes to national and municipal climate and carbon neutrality targets and complies with the spirit of the Public Libraries Act.
Project partner libraries:
Why was the project launched?
The national project aims to sharpen the environmental work of public libraries, produce new information on the environmental awareness of libraries and create common materials and operating methods.
With the help of an expert partner, the project will measure the carbon footprints of public libraries, determine measures suitable for libraries and support the monitoring of measurements, as well as find ways to promote the sharing economy and the implementation of the SDGs at libraries.
Carbon calculations will help make the sector’s climate impact visible and enable libraries to better respond to the climate targets set by municipalities. This will make for more efficient resource use in climate work, reduction of emissions and allocation of cost savings. The aim is to produce environmental indicators for the national statistics on public libraries.
Objectives of the project
The project will enable libraries to expand their environmental awareness and strengthen the image of their environmentally aware and ecological operations. Another objective of the project is to provide a discussion forum for local residents to explore environmental themes, such as the carbon footprint, carbon handprint and the sharing economy, together with experts. The sharpening of the environmental work of public libraries will also make the environmental work of libraries visible to customers, local residents and municipal decision-makers.
Implementation and deployment of the project
The project is based on a survey, carbon footprint measurements and SDG-mapping carried out by the Bringing Environmental Awareness of Public Libraries to the 2020s project.
The project measures the carbon footprints of partner libraries and identifies suitable measures to reduce them. These measures are carried out together with an expert partner.
Tools for systematic change will be used to deepen awareness of the sharing economy, the carbon handprint of libraries and the SDGs. In addition, workshops will be organised with an expert partner. The project will improve communication of the environmental work of libraries, activate local residents to discuss environmental issues and bring an environmental perspective to collection development.
The partners’ task is to participate in the planning and implementation of the project, to organise regional training, to test, develop and implement new practices and ways of working and to deploy them in libraries.
The Green Library page and materials at kirjastot.fi can be freely used as a source of information. The project will update the site with new material and articles.
The partner libraries and webinar participants will implement the results of the project in their own networks. The results and reports of the project will also be presented internationally in various library-sector forums.
Environmental awareness of public libraries to the 2020s project (2020-2021)
This project was a national research and training project managed by Helsinki City Library and funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The aims was to promote environmental awareness, carbon neutrality and the sharing economy in libraries.
In this project, a survey on the environmental awareness of public libraries conducted in 2012 was renewed and supplemented. In addition, libraries' carbon footprints were calculated and libraries' carbon handprints were examined.
Senior expert Outi Ugas from Positive Impact gives a video presentation with English subtitles “The results of the libraries’ environmental awareness survey and the library’s carbon footprint”., 2021
Youth and Environmental Emotions project (2021-2022)
This project was a national development project managed by the Helsinki City Library and funded by the Ministry of Education and Culture. The purpose was to test and develop the library's environmental and climate activities using a method where the young people themselves can choose the topics, methods and forms of work that interest them. The goal of the project is to create an operating model that can be implemented in different libraries.
Finnish Library Association
The Finnish Library Association is a non-profit organisation that promotes the status of public libraries. Our members include library users and professionals who work at libraries.
We produce new and topical information regarding libraries and inform politicians about the importance of supporting libraries. We also organise events and train professionals in the field.
ENSULIB announces the Top Six Green Libraries and Green Library Projects 2023
The Award committee received 28 submissions of which 19 were qualified to the long list and evaluated by our international pool of reviewers. The Award was divided into two categories Best Green Library (including grand scale projects) and more modest Best Green Library projects.