Hello, Russ.


There are a number of resources on this topic, including decades of research.  Depending on the type of material, there is a range of what is considered acceptable relative humidity and temperature.  You may want to start with the Library of Congress Preservation Directorate web site, where you will find quite a bit of information:  There is guidance on care and handling and storage for a variety of library material types.  A cool, relatively dry, clean, and stable environment is recommended. 


Specifically about paper deterioration:


The National Archives and Records Administration has guidelines for their facilities.  See the web pages on Preservation:, and


Another good, quick source of information is the collection of preservation leaflets offered for free by NEDCC:


If you have additional questions after reviewing the information, you may contact the Library of Congress via Ask A Librarian:


Best wishes,



Anne Harrison

Librarian / Network Program Specialist

Federal Library and Information Network (FEDLINK)

Library of Congress

101 Independence Ave. SE  Washington, DC 20540-4935

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From: Federal Librarians Discussion List <[log in to unmask]> On Behalf Of Girsberger, Russ D CIV USN CENSERVSUPP (USA)
Sent: Thursday, September 3, 2020 5:51 AM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: [FEDLIB] Temperature / Humidity guidelines for federal libraries


Good morning, everyone,


We are having difficulty convincing our base facilities people that high humidity is bad for libraries.

Our temps and humidity are barely below the allowable limits for buildings on our base, so they are not concerned about long-term issues from these levels.


Is there a federal directive or other guidance that your libraries use that shows allowable levels for humans are not necessarily good for paper?


Thank you very much for your advice.




Russ Girsberger

Naval School of Music Library

1420 Gator Blvd.

Virginia Beach, VA 23459-2617

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phone: 757-462-5734

fax: 757-462-7294

DSN 253-5734


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