We would like to share with you a very enriching interview about the Blue Economy that we received from the Klaipeda City Municipality Imanuelis Kantas Public Library (Lithuania).
We are sure that reading it will be very enriching for everyone.
There can be no success in solitude. All great projects and ideas have been implemented with a help of great teams and wonderful people. The project “Blue Libraries: Organizations and Innovations for Blue Economy and Water Pollution Awareness” has connected wonderful organisations in one project to talk in blue economy language.
After previously introducing our project partner it is time to share what organisations are together with us talking about the blue economy worldwide. Liepaja city Central Scientific library is a wonderful organisation of knowledge and the director of the library Ilga Erba has agreed to share her view on blue economy.
B: I am very excited to talk about blue economy with colleagues from the library in Latvia and my first question for You is why do You think blue economy is important?
Ilga: I will speak for our team that the blue economy, in our opinion, is a way to encourage every person to make reasonable use of the opportunities provided by local conditions and resources. The blue economy is essentially a matter of the survival of the world and the existence of civilization.
B: The reasonable use of the resources that the nature has provided is definitely a prerequisite for blue economy. What blue economy businesses or activities you see in Liepaja city?
Ilga: We would like to note that the daily life in Liepāja and Liepāja residents is largely related to water. Liepāja is a city located between the Baltic Sea and Liepāja Lake, connected to each other by the Trade Channel. The city regularly works on the water quality and compliance with all norms. For example, Liepāja beach is a popular swimming spot and has been known as such since the beginning of the 19th century. We should mention the company “Liepājas ūdens” which actively works on the quality of drinking water and the operation of the wastewater treatment system – collection and discharge of wastewater to wastewater treatment facilities, treatment and discharge of wastewater into surface water bodies.
B: It is clear that blue economy is closer to us that we assume. Since our project is targeted towards youth, do you implement projects, events or initiatives with youth?
Ilga: Indeed we do, just recently, in 2022 our library received great recognition and provided useful information during lecture-demonstration “There is no tomorrow without water!”. The lecture took place within the framework of the international campaign “Night of Museums” and the main topic was “We wake up for tomorrow”. Evaluating and understanding the world’s threats to the environment, nature and the entire humanity, the library wanted to emphasize the enormous importance of water in the life process at the event. Moreover, we organize literature and photo exhibitions, competitions, readings and events dedicated to the World Water Day. Let me also mention the Nature House, which has been open in Liepāja since 2020 which has been founded in cooperation with municipality of Liepāja. The Nature House is an environmental educational center where visitors have the opportunity to learn about environmental sciences – biology, ecology, zoology and other fields of natural science. Thus, we are happy to be a part of creative solutions on educating society.
B: How and why should we support social entrepreneurship?
Ilga: We think that it would be a way to solve social urgent problems (for example, health and social care system, price increase, inflation and cost of living) or create benefit for the wider society. The main and most important thing in this process is that the entrepreneur in his local or international activity refuses to make personal profit. It is appreciated if young people with their own perspective on current issues are involved in the production of goods and the provision of services. Social entrepreneurship for youth is a pure opportunity to get the knowledge, to learn and do a good deed alongside.
B: Before joining the team of Immanuel Kant library I have had a very different view on libraries and today I am happy to see all those wonderful librarians accrso the world, changing their environment for the better. I wish Your team to proceed being creative and searching for tools to talk blue economy and thank you for your time.
Ilga: It was my pleasure and we are happy to be informational project partners. From my side, I am inviting you and colleagues, Klaipėda city residents to visit Liepaja and visit Nature house concept.
An interview by Birutė Andruškaitė