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West Coast Environmental Law

  • West Coast Environmental Law
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  • West Coast Environmental Law maintains a comprehensive print and online library of environmental and legal materials. All our library holdings are catalogued for electronic searching at our library and on our web site at http://vcn.bc.ca/wcel. The public is welcome to use our library; students, concerned citizens, and other environmental groups are our most frequent users. The library is open weekdays, from 8:30 am to 5:00 pm. The library holds materials that West Coast lawyers and staff use for our own research, as well as materials that we think are useful for the public. Materials range from books, periodicals and video cassettes, to unpublished reports, collections of clippings and CD-ROMs. Our materials cover both legal and non-legal subject matters. Holdings include the Revised Statutes of British Columbia, Federal Statutes on CD-ROM, EcoLog, Environmental Appeal Board decisions, citizen guides on pollution prevention and wetland conservation, over a hundred periodicals and law journals, and various state of the environment reports, to name a few. Most West Coast publications and a number of our other print holdings are available for reading online through our web site. This past year, we began work in partnership with Sandra Janzen, a volunteer service worker placed with us by the Mennonite Central Committee, for a two year term. Sandra's project is to reorganize our library holdings, assist members of the public using our library, strengthen the links between our hardcopy collection and our web site, and promote our library. We also began an extensive reorganization of our web site this past year. The reorganized site better reflects the diversity of issues we are working on, and makes both our own resources, and our links to other resources, more readily available to the public. The volume of information we had made available online had outgrown our original site plan. Users and staff alike found that documents were becoming harder and harder to find. After numerous brainstorming, design and planning sessions, we developed a new system for electronically publishing our work. The site is now broken down into our areas of expertise, giving users a much more thematic approach to our body of work. We are also unifying the look and feel of the site, to improve ease of use, and to impart a sense of familiarity. Initial reaction to the new site has been positive and plentiful, with comments from a variety of users, from students and concerned citizens to other environmental groups and government personnel.
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