EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ —East Brunswick Public Library and the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission’s award-winning Option Green environmental program series is expanding. The partnership has been selected as a grantee for the American Library Association’s Resilient Communities: Libraries Respond to Climate Change initiative.

The American Library Association grant provides funding for film screenings, community dialogues and related events based on local interest. East Brunswick Public Library is one of twenty-five libraries to receive this award.  

“The Library and the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission are excited to offer more programming on the topics of sustainability, climate change and environmental justice in 2021,” says Melissa Hozik, Adult Programming Librarian. “Climate change impacts all of us, and having discussions about the science and how we as a society can make changes is more important now than ever.”

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For 2021, there are several programs planned, including a documentary discussion on “Decoding the Weather Machine” with New Jersey State Climatologist and Rutgers University professor David A. Robinson on January 13, a lecture on “Sustainable Agriculture Projects in Zimbabwe” with Stockton University professor Tait Chirenje, and the presentation Disparate Environmental Impacts: Causes and Solutions to Environmental Injustice” with Maritza Jauregui, Assistant Professor of Sustainability at Stockton University on Thursday, March 11 at 7:00 pm.

The library will also hold a workshop on weather emergency preparedness to help community members stay safe after weather events such as Tropical Storm Isaias.

“The Library is very happy to have the Friends as a partner on this project,” Hozik added. “Our partnership has allowed East Brunswick residents to discuss environmental issues that face our community.”

In 2017, the East Brunswick Public Library began a partnership with the Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission (a nonprofit dedicated to local environmental education and conservation) on the “Option Green” program series. Each year there are six events, ranging from lectures featuring environmentalists in various fields to documentary screenings with facilitated discussions. Since 2017, over 600 people have attended Option Green programs.

The Friends of the East Brunswick Environmental Commission and East Brunswick Public Library received a 2017 Environmental Achievement Award from the Association of New Jersey Environmental Commissions for their Option Green Lecture series.

This program series will be held virtually on the Zoom platform; closed-captioning will be provided. Additional information on the program series can be found online at ilove.ebpl.org/option-green.