ALA
Contact:  Andy Bridges
              Communications Specialist
  202-628-8410

For Immediate Release
December 6, 2006 

              
ALA President Leslie Burger to Speak on EPA Library Closings at National Advisory Council Meeting

WASHINGTON - On December 14, ALA President Leslie Burger will speak at a meeting of the National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology (NACEPT) on the impact of Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) library closings.

The $2 million budget cut that brings about these closings - initially proposed by the EPA and included in President Bush's budget proposals for Fiscal Year (FY) 2007 - reduces the 35-year-old EPA Library Network's budget by 80 percent and forces closure of several regional libraries.

"The closure of these EPA libraries has given rise to grave concern in the library, science, and environmental communities," Burger said. "Public access to vital environmental information needs to remain open, and the skilled librarians within those libraries need to remain on hand in order to assist scientists and the public in accessing those materials.

"I will share the concerns of librarians across the country - not to mention scientists and those who care about the environment - to this Council meeting," Burger continued. "I will make it clear just how important these libraries and their respective librarians are."

The meeting will be held on December 14 and 15, 2006, at The Madison Hotel, 1777 15th Street NW, Washington, DC, 20005, and Burger is scheduled to speak on December 14 at 12:30 p.m. The meeting is open to the public, with limited seating on a first-come, first-served basis.

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EPA established the National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology (NACEPT) in 1988 to provide independent advice to the EPA Administrator on a broad range of environmental policy, technology and management issues. Council members include senior leaders and experts who represent academia, business and industry, community and environmental advocacy groups, environmental justice organizations, professional organizations, and state, local, and tribal governments.