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EPA Set to Close Library Network and Electronic Catalog

.: Cindi Trainor forwarded this to me just now: Bush Axing Libraries While Pushing For More Research. Ironic timing, considering the previous post about the end of the research library in natural sciences. Another very serious example of public information in the USA about to disappear.

Washington, DC — Under President Bush’s proposed budget, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is slated to shut down its network of libraries that serve its own scientists as well as the public, according to internal agency documents released today by Public Employees for Environmental Responsibility (PEER). In addition to the libraries, the agency will pull the plug on its electronic catalog which tracks tens of thousands of unique documents and research studies that are available nowhere else.

Under Bush’s plan, $2 million of a total agency library budget of $2.5 million will be lost, including the entire $500,000 budget for the EPA Headquarters library and its electronic catalog that makes it possible to search for documents through the entire EPA library network. These reductions are just a small portion of the $300 million in cuts the administration has proposed for EPA operations.

One wonders how EPA scientists can be expected to do their research. Research libraries and library systems haven't made it to the point where their services are entirely virtual.

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