ALA calls for real update on EPA library status

Contact: Larra Clark, Macey Morales

ALA Media Relations

For Immediate Release

December 12, 2006

ALA calls for real update on EPA library status

(CHICAGO) American Library Association (ALA) President Leslie Burger responded to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) update yesterday on the status of agency libraries.

"The teleconference December 11 raised more questions that it answered. It is a gross oversimplification to state that everyone benefits when libraries go digital. This is only true when there is a thoughtful digitization plan that ensures valuable information is not lost and public access is retained. We are still waiting for the EPA to disclose its digitization plan and budget," Burger said.

"The EPA referenced American Library Association guidelines and subsequently pointed to a fact sheet on our Web site as the basis for decision-making: . The loose collection of resources is a good starting point for thinking about collection development policies but does not constitute ‘ALA guidance and criteria’ as was referenced in EPA press materials. However, we would welcome the opportunity to meet with EPA staff and learn more about their modernization efforts."

For more information on the EPA library closures, please visit ALA President Leslie Burger will speak at a meeting of the National Advisory Council for Environmental Policy and Technology (NACEPT) on the impact of EPA library closings Thursday, December 14.