ALIA Sustainable Libraries (ALIA Green)

The ALIA Sustainable Libraries Group has been established to inform & educate colleagues on issues of sustainability. The group will support and promote research and professional development, and increase the awareness of environmental concerns amongst library staff. The group also seeks to enhance and promote documentary resources connected to sustainability.

Group interest Special interest

State National

Community page ALIA Sustainable Libraries (ALIA Green) members community

Katalin Mindum
Anne Reddacliff

Sustainability covers three key areas; environmental, social and financial. To be sustainable is to meet the needs of today's society in a way that doesn't harm the ability of future generations to meet their needs. The consumption of finite resources and sustainable development are key concerns of society and therefore of libraries. The Sustainable Libraries Group will focus on the key areas of sustainability as applicable to the operation of libraries.

The aims of the ALIA Sustainable Libraries Group are to:

  • Inform and educate our colleagues and also support and promote best practice.
  • Support and promote research and professional development.
  • Increase the awareness of environmental concerns amongst library staff.
  • Enhance and promote documentary resources and library services connected to sustainability (development of collections on environmental themes, exhibitions, outreach, etc.).
  • Consider the effects of climate change on libraries (modification of the conditions of storage and preservation, building insulation, impacts on library finances and management).
  • Share information and ideas about the application of environment-friendly practices in libraries, or transferable to libraries (recovery of rain water, power supply from renewable energies, control of printings, resource recovery).
  • Sustainable collection development, including sourcing materials from Australian publishers and subscribing to digital collections such as ebooks.
  • The proposal of environmental recommendations to the profession, including retro fitting existing libraries.
  • Foster co-operation, collaboration and the sharing of knowledge and ideas relating to sustainable practices amongst library staff from libraries across the country.


ALIA has commissioned a team from Charles Sturt University to carry out a Greening Libraries research project, which will underpin ALIA’s new sustainability drive, in line with the Association’s commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals.

The CSU team is made up of Dr Jane Garner, Dr Kasey Garrison, Dr Sabine Wardle and Associate Professor Karen Bell. They have been awarded the $5,000 grant to research environmentally sustainable projects across Australian libraries.

The project has been made possible through the generous support of the Council of Australian University Librarians (CAUL), and is being run in conjunction with ALIA Sustainable Libraries. CAUL says "we are pleased to support this research, which will surface the work that libraries across Australia are undertaking related to sustainable practice. A key output from his work will be a series of case studies that will provide opportunities to showcase best practice, inspire action, and further the greening libraries movement".  

Read the Greening Libraries Literature Review here. 

For further information about this research project, please contact: [email protected] 


Social Media

Find us on Facebook and Twitter


We cover ideas and issues in sustainable practice for libraries and librarians, in our blog, HERE.