The (Dutch) Caribbean island of Aruba has committed itself to be fully off fossil fuels by 2020. With the country’s partners, such as Richard Branson’s Carbon War Room and Dutch Centre for Applied Sciences TNO, the island is progressively heading for a green future. The Aruban government is doing all it can to reach its sustainability targets. But energy transition is not the only thing happening on the island. While most countries momentarily focus mainly on macro-economic issues, trying to solve global effects of economic instability, Aruba has convincingly chosen a different direction. The Aruban government realizes that sustainability is not just a matter of an energy system. If Aruba makes the right strategic choices now and uses the momentum it has created to its full potential, the island could set an example that the whole world is in desperate need of.
All over the Caribbean, as well as in the Netherlands and the USA, much interest has been shown in the awareness and participation programmes of Green‘s’Cool and Green Education, through which Aruba makes efforts to involve the entire nation, aiming to achieve a fully sustainable economy. Through Green‘s’Cool, the Aruban government organizes events and awareness programmes, involving and educating the crowd in many different ways. It is a momentum based and ever evolving programme that is fast becoming integral part of the island’s transition. Green‘s’Cool is a public private partnership and has thus far managed to run independent of public funding. All media are involved, old and new.
“Aruba is going green!”
Green Education is an initiative from the National Library of Aruba, supporting the government’s efforts to create awareness and participation among the local crowd. It was during, the 2nd Green Education Conference, where we were invited to contribute with a series of lectures and workshops, that we officially joined forces with the Aruban National Library and its Green Education programme. ACURIL rewarded this initiative with a prize last June. At the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2013 conference in Chicago, we were invited to share Aruba’s efforts and results with librarians from all over the world. During that presentation, we were publicly dared by ACURIL to create a toolkit for educational institutions and libraries to be able to follow suit.
This blog is the record of the development process of ‘GROW – a Toolkit for Green Education’. It should enable libraries to position themselves as important hubs of information in a demand driven society and become driving forces in the quest to sustainability.