We are researching the topic of how librarians can plan for the future in their libraries. In architectural school, the "Environment' and "Environmental Design" were at the root of all my design considerations. Most of us in class thought, "We've got this. We can be agents of change for good. Our values and caring for our planet through intelligent design are going to help everyone." The "Almost" in the title of the following intensive and exhausting-to-read (for me at least!) article sums up the results of our youthful, optimistic dreams.
This is this a photo of weekend's New York Times Magazine cover, stark white letters on unrelieved black, small enough to make you really look and read. The exclusive Two-Part issue of August 1, 2018 - Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change - is so overarching a topic that it must be considered by all community leaders as they try to plan for services that are foremost on their users' minds and strive to meet just their basic human needs.
The publication clearly and in plain words puts before our eyes for all to see, the feet-of-clay history of what we have done since we were all warned that climate change was real and how it could affect our lives.
Our global climate affects our jobs, our health, immigration intensity, food and water supplies, demand for science-literate citizens, our power supplies and the willingness by our community's institutions to embrace adaptability. We have no exact idea how this issue will devolve but one thing is certain; it will and we must consider our environment in every decision we make when planning our libraries.
The chapter titles of Part One are riveting. As you begin to read Part Two, you'll get the drift of where this is headed.
1. 'This Is the Whole Banana', Spring 1979
2. 'The Whimsies of the Invisible World', Spring 1979
3. 'Between catastrophe and Chaos', July 1979
4. 'A Very Aggressive Defensive Program', Summer 1979-summer 1980
5. 'We Are Flying Blind', October 1980
6. 'Otherwise, They'll Gurgle', November 1980-September 1981
7. 'We're All Going to Be the Victims', March 1982
8. 'The Direction of an Impending catastrophe', 1982
Here is the link to the full on-line publication (with awe inspiring photos).
Losing Earth: The Decade We Almost Stopped Climate Change By Nathaniel Rich Photographs and Videos by George Steinmetz