Information and commitment: the environmental libraries in Germany

German environmental libraries, which came into existence in the 1970s, do not conform to one single model: their political and information function is more or less assured, but there are differences that stem from their geographical location. The history of environmental libraries in the former German Democratic Republic in particular has some specific features: the role that these somewhat unconventional institutions play in the public arena is related to campaigning practices and to a specific investment in the domain of associations and education.