UMass Amherst
Site Search
UMass Amherst LibrariesAsk a librarian
About the Libraries » News » Press Releases 2012 » Libraries Help Campus Celebrate Earth Day

Libraries Help Campus Celebrate Earth Day

Press Release: For Immediate Release

UMass Amherst Libraries

Date: April 11, 2012





Amherst, MA - The Du Bois Library will offer a number of sustainability-related activities for this year’s expanded Earth Day Festival from Wednesday, April 18, to Monday, April 23, 2012. The activities at the Library include a film screening of “Rivers and Tides,” a self-guided garden tour, a demonstration of "BuildingGreen Suite,” a resource dedicated to green building materials and practices, and a celebration of the gold rating for our campus from STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System).  For a full calendar of events, visit:

At the heart of campus, the Library is proud to host these activities because recently the campus has made headlines with sustainable initiatives.

In August of 2011, UMass Amherst received a gold star rating from STARS (Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System), which is a self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to gauge their relative progress towards sustainability. The award recognizes accomplishments in the areas of Education and Research, Operations, Planning Administration and Engagement, and Innovation.

The gold star hangs in the lobby of the Du Bois Library as a symbol of the Libraries’ partnership with the Campus Sustainability Initiative. Librarian Madeleine Charney, whose recent sabbatical centered on the role of the academic library in the sustainability movement, describes a “paradigm shift in the planning and actions on campuses across the country—to consider generations to come. Librarians are deeply involved in this shift as they guide users to relevant resources that strengthen sustainability-based projects.”

The UMass Amherst Libraries are poised to participate in the “Green Offices” initiative on campus. The Green Office Program gives workplaces the tools and knowledge they need to become more sustainable. In an effort to decrease the amount of waste produced in campus offices, the Campus Sustainability Initiative created the Green Office Program to help the university reach the emissions and waste reduction goals outlined in the Climate Action Plan.

Sustainability is important to the campus and the students. “Among prospective students and parents, 69 percent said that a campus’s eco-friendliness would influence their decisions on where to apply,” according to “More Colleges Adding ‘Green’ to School Colors,” The New York Times (8/16/11).

In response to the campus-wide movement, the UMass Amherst Libraries created a Sustainability Fund to support the campus community with philanthropic funding for print and electronic materials, archives, exhibits, and programming related to environmental, economic, and social sustainability. So far, over $65,000 has been raised for the Sustainability Fund from nearly 1,600 donors. To donate, visit:

For more information, contact Madeleine Charney (413-577-0784,






Last Edited: 23 October 2012