Book Industry Reaches Significant Environmental Milestone
Today, the U.S. book industry passed a meaningful environmental threshold—approximately 50 percent of publishers now have environmental commitments in place–most with goals and timelines for vastly improving their environmental and climate performance. This is significant due to the fact that as recent as 2001, virtually no publishers had environmental commitments on record within this $40 billion/year industry. This milestone was hit with the release of Hachette Book Group's new environmental policy. Hachette is one of the top five publishers in the U.S. and the new policy commits them to a tenfold increase in recycled fiber by 2012, a 20-percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions, sourcing 20 percent of paper certified from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), ending the use of paper that may impact Endangered Forests, and a wide range of other initiatives.
"In these challenging economic times, it is wonderful to see a company as large as Hachette making environmental stewardship a core value and coming out with an industry-leading policy. This helps the industry to pass an important threshold and hopefully will motivate those larger and smaller players that are lagging to do more." said Tyson Miller, director of the Green Press Initiative.
When Hachette Book Group achieves the commitments laid out in its new policy, the company will save approximately 267,537 trees and up to 86,000 tons of greenhouse gases each year—equivalent to removing nearly 16,000 cars.
Relevant Industry Environmental Facts and Figures:
The Book Industry Environmental Council (BIEC—more at bookcouncil.org) recently committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 20 percent by 2020—a global first in publishing and equivalent to 2.5 million tons of C02/yr or the annual emissions of 450,000 cars.
A report co-published by Green Press in 2008 found that the industry consumes the equivalent of 30 million trees per year
The U.S. book industry has increased its use of recycled fiber sixfold from 2004 to 2007–equivalent to eliminating the annual emissions of over 200,000 cars.
Over two hundred publishers now have commitments in place to increase recycled and FSC certified fiber, eliminate impacts on Endangered Forests, and a range of other initiatives (including Random House, Simon & Schuster, Scholastic, Chronicle Books, New World Library, Baker Publishing Group, Lantern Books, Thomas-Nelson, Chelsea Green, and a variety of others)
New Industry Progress
The BIEC is finalizing a green publisher certification program and logo that will be launched in Spring of 2010. It is a points-based system similar to LEED that awards environmental leadership across 22 environmental performance areas and will be identifiable on books
This national eco-label will set a rigorous environmental performance standard and qualifying publishers will be audited
Contact: Kelly Spitzner, Communications Coordinator, 952-223-3364, firstname.lastname@example.org