This post is about my interest in the response of public libraries to natural disasters; it is a call to action for libraries to become involved in emergency community-wide planning.
Public libraries in the US increasingly play a central role in communities during natural disasters e.g. Hurricanes Irene and Sandy, the tornadoes in Joplin and Tuscaloosa. A recent analysis from the World Meteorological Office (2013) found the period 2001-2010, to be a decade of climate extremes. It seems that further natural disasters as a result of an acceleration in global warming are inevitable – some may disagree! As natural disasters are often local events, local organizations and individuals are critical in responding to them.