Green Books

Eco-Libris is happy to offer you a collection of links to articles on issues related to sustainable reading. You will find here articles written on broad range of subjects, such as: publishers' green policies, green books, environmental impacts of paper, ebooks, book swapping, POD and more.

The links are brought to you in a chronological order. We hope you will find them useful!

The Past as Prologue: 5 Sustainability Milestones at McGraw-Hill, Ann Goodman,, October 3, 2011- When Louise Raymond arrived at The McGraw-Hill Companies over 10 years ago, there was no office of corporate responsibility. Landing directly from New York City government, Raymond -- who is now vice president of corporate responsibility and sustainability - was hired to oversee the company's philanthropic programs.

RAN has made it - Disney is working with RAN on a new comprehensive paper policy!, Eco-Libris blog, October 3, 2011- RAN, according to their email, is working with Disney on a comprehensive paper policy that will ensure Disney stops sourcing paper from the world's endangered forests and instead increases use of responsible alternatives like recycled paper. Negotiations are still underway and the campaign will remain active until a strong final policy is announced.

how to buy a greener book, Lauren, Effectivism, August 7, 2011- Amazon, the leading online seller of books, has been very coy about revealing their carbon footprint (although they point out lots of things they do to make their deliveries more environmentally friendly). However, the findings from a case study of may provide insights into the eco-friendliness of e-commerce more broadly. The study finds — perhaps surprisingly — that shopping online is often more energy efficient than shopping locally.

How to Be a Tree Hugging Book Lover, Kim, How to Raise a Reader, July 28, 2011 - My lament about the closing of Borders and the decline of the print book generated online comments and an offline conversation about the environmental impact of books versus e-readers. You might assume that digital reading is greener than print reading, but the reality is not so simple. According to Eco-Libris, an organization promoting sustainable reading, the carbon footprint of an e-reader is about 15 to 20 times that of one newly purchased book.

Scholastic is raising the 2012 goal for FSC-Certified paper from 30% to 35%, July 27, 2011- Scholastic Inc., the global children’s publishing, education and media company, today announced that continued progress has been made toward the company-wide goal of strengthening its sustainable paper procurement practices and increasing the percentage of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified and post-consumer waste (PCW) recycled paper purchased.

Is Renting Textbooks Green? Carbon Offsets and Trees, oh my !!, RentScouter, April 26, 2011 - In our last article, we discussed how textbook renting, in the form of buying a textbook from your local bookstore and selling books back afterwords, has been happening for years, and is more environmentally friendly than renting from today's textbook rental companies. Renting books addresses some real problems, like helping to reduce the cost of college and avoid the uncertainty of being able to sell your book back for a reasonable price.

Textbook Recycling Program, National Wildlife Federation, April 22, 2011 - The National Wildlife Federation (NWF) has partnered with McGraw-Hill and Newpage Corporation to pilot a textbook recycling program. The partnership combines McGraw-Hill's sustainability commitment, NewPage's desire to increase fiber recovery, and NWF's environmental education and sustainability programs.

Partnering for the Better Cascades and Random House are giving a second life to books, Cascades, RCO - Recycling Council of Ontario, April 21, 2011 - To create a positive environmental impact, Cascades and Random House, Inc., the largest English-language-publisher of consumer books, have partnered to give a second life to the materials used for unsold hardcover and paperback books. Cascades Recovery collects Random House’s returned books, while Cascades Fine Papers Group uses recovered fibers to manufacture Rolland Enviro100 Book, a recycled paper that is used for many of the publisher’s new titles.

How to Green Textbook Sales: Tear Them Into Chapters, Paul Smith, Triple Pundit, March 4, 2011 - With the increasing ubiquity of iPads, Kindles and the like, eBook versions of text books are starting to become an option for students. But what if you only need certain chapters of the book and paying for the whole thing is an unnecessary expense? Until services like Reference Tree, there wasn't much you could do.

Indigo winds down eco-paper initiative, Stuart Woods, Quill & Quire, March 3, 2011 - Indigo Books & Music is no longer requiring publishers to supply information on recycled-paper content in their books. The change marks the end of a green-paper initiative launched by Indigo nearly two years ago that aimed to establish industry benchmarks for post-consumer recycled and FSC-approved paper in books and magazines sold by the retail chain.

How to publish a green book, The Ecologist, Emma Bocking, December 15, 2009 - UK-based Green Books are pioneers in the publishing industry and have been making tracks in reducing the environmental impact of printing and selling books.

More Recycled Paper Needs to be Used, Triple Pundit, Gina-Marie Cheeseman, July 11, 2008 - Information about the environmental impcats of virgin paper usage, recycled paper usage and the steps already taken in th book industry to tackle its environmental footprint.

How to cut your paper footprint, The Independent, Vicky Hill, July 10, 2008 - Mandy Haggith speaks about her trip in 2006 which took her round most of the great forests of the world for her new book: Paper Trails. It tracks the devastation left behind by the production of the 12.5 million tons of paper gobbled up by the UK every year.

Electronic Device Stirs Unease at Book Fair, New York Times, Edward Wyatt, June 2, 2008 - Report from BookExpo America on how publishers and bookstores address the growing sales of e-books, with regards to the increasing popularity of Amazon's Kindle.

Would you like that book in paper or plastic?, Environmental Science & Technology, Erika Engelhaupt , May 7, 2008 - E-book readers save paper, but can a piece of plastic really be better for the environment? ES&T reporter Erika Engelhaupt is determined - very determined - to find out.

No-frills publishing on the rise,, Guy Dammann and agencies, April 4, 2008 - HarperCollins Publishers is forming a new publishing group, under the leadership of Robert S. Miller, which will plans to implement innovative concepts, including shift of the burden of risk towards the bookseller by offering titles on a no-returns basis.

Merrill Lynch: Turning Trees into Money, Environmental Capital,, Dana Mattioli, March 11, 2008 - Merrill Lynch announced on new investment of $9 million to finance a project to protect 750,000 hectares of forest in Indonesia. The investment in forest conservation is expected to generate $432 million in carbon financing over the next 30 years.

Toward a Greener Future, Publishers Weekly, Jim Milliot, March 10, 2008 - An analysis of the the benchmarking study 'Environmental Trends and Climate Impacts:Findings from the U.S. Book Industry'.

Report: Book publishing industry getting greener,, Associated Press, March 10, 2008 - 'Environmental Trends and Climate Impacts:Findings from the U.S. Book Industry', a detailed report that present and analyze the book publishing's ecological footprint is being released.

Selling books by the chapter, Springwise, Murtaza Ali Patel, February 15, 2008 - A new innovation from Random House that can save some paper-made books: selling books by the chapter. The first book to be offered by them is 'Made to Stick', written by Chip Heath and Dan Heath.

HarperCollins Will Post Free Books on the Web, New York Times, Motoko Rich, February 11, 2008 - HarperCollins Publishers will be offering on their website free electronic editions of some of its books on its website, including books of Paulo Coelho, Neil Gaiman and Erin Hunter.

Rain Forests Fall at 'Alarming' Rate, ABC News, Edwards Harris - Associated Press, February 3, 2008 - a gloomy reminder of the state of rain forests around the world, which continues to get worse.

Brazil to Increase Monitors in Rain Forest as Illegal Clearing Spreads, Washington Post, Marco Sibaja - Associated Press, January 25, 2008 - the Brazilian government announced that it would send additional federal police and environmental agents to the Amazon following an announcement that illegal clearing of the rain forest had jumped dramatically last year.

Harry Potter author snubs Finnish printing paper, Yahoo! News, January 23, 2008 - J.K. Rowling has blocked the Finnish version of the last Harry Potter from being printed on local paper because it lacks the FSC certification.

Scholastic Embraces FSC-Certified Paper,, January 10, 2008 - Scholastic, the world's largest publisher and distributor of children's books, announced on its new green policy that is meant to "further strengthening its sustainable paper procurement practices".

Prince Charles to work with Norway to save forests, Reuters, December 27, 2007 - Prince Charles offered to Norwegian Prime Minister, Jens Stoltenberg, to work together on saving forests in developing countries.

Love That Book? Then Set It Free, New York Times, Michelle Slatallad, December 20, 2007 - Michelle Slatallad writes on her column 'Cyberfamilias' about her BookCrossing adventures.

World Bank Launches Forest Carbon Fund, Planet Ark, Reuters, December 12, 2007 - news from Bali, Indonesia: The World Bank launched plans for a US$300 million fund to fend off global warming by preserving forests in developing countries.

Publishers aim for greener future, Guardian Unlimited, Richard Lea, November 27, 2007 - UK books trade has taken a step towards a greener future, setting a target of a 10% reduction in carbon footprint from 2006 levels by 2015.

Online library gives readers access to 1.5 million books,, November 27, 2007 - The Million Book Project has just has completed the digitization of more than 1.5 million books, which are now available online.

Amazon debuts Kindle e-book reader, CNET, Caroline McCarthy, November 19, 2007 - Amazon finally unveils its new wireless reading device - Amazon Kindle

In the Valley of the Literate, New York Times, Roger Mummert, November 16, 2007 - the story of Pioneer Valley of Western Massachusetts, which is a paradise for every avid reader - plenty of independent bookstores, many literature events every day and even loads of authors that live next by.

Simon & Schuster Getting Greener,, Associated Press, November 8, 2007 - Simon & Schuster announced on a new environmental initiative and paper policy that will dramatically increase the amount of recycled fiber in the paper used to manufacture its books.

MySpace and HarperCollins collaborating on environmental book,, Associated Press, October 24, 2007 - MySpace is collaborating with a children’s imprint of HarperCollins on an environmental handbook coming out April 22, Earth Day.

Clear the Bookshelf and Fill It Up Again, All Online, New York Times, Joanne Kaufman, October 15, 2007 - everything you wanted to know about BookMooch.

Books for Free?, Brave New World, Martyn Daniels, September 14, 2007 - an interesting business model allows book readers to get their books for free by allowing sponsors to plant advertisings in the pages.

Envisioning the Next Chapter for Electronic Books, New York Times, Brad Stone, September 5, 2007 - are we on the verge of a significant breakthrough in electronic books?

On the Outdoor Book Tour, the Word Is Spreading, New York Times, Nina Bernstein, September 1, 2007 - the NYT brings us a great piece about one of the summer's greatest pleasures - outdoor reading.

Harry Potter's eco-pages magic to earth-friendly ears, Financial Post, CanWest News Service, Mary Lamey, July 18, 2007 - the seventh book in the Harry Potter series is said to be the greenest book in publishing history.

What's So Bad About Deforestation?, Planet Ark, Reuters, July 5, 2007 - some explanations of the environmental impacts associated with deforestation.

A matter of life and death, - Environment, Wangari Maathai, November 13, 2006 - Wangari Maathai, founder of the Green Belt Movement and the 2004 Nobel peace prize laureate, explains the importance of the Billion Tree Campaign, which is aimed to plant a billion trees.

The Hidden Life of Paper and Its Impact on the Environment, New York Times, Louise Story, October 25, 2006 - a couple of large publishers are starting to think about their own impact on the environment.

Saving the Planet, One Book at a Time, New York Times, Rachel Domadio, July 9, 2006 - on efforts to green up the production of books, from Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth (the book)and Random House new policy to the Green Press Initiative's treatise.

Random Goes Green, Publishers Weekly, Rachel Deahl, May 17, 2006 - Random House is significantly increasing its reliance on recycled paper. It plans to incrementally raise the amount of recycled paper it uses over a four-year period to 30% by 2010.

Page of Enlightenment, Grist, September 12, 2005 - Nicole Rycroft, campaigns director for Markets Initiative, answers Grist's questions. You can also check her replies to readers' questions ('Tree Enterprise').

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