Sunday, November 7, 2010

Green Books Campaign: Green Press Initiative presents the progress made so far in the book industry

Some people asked me about the importance of the Green Books Campaign in the era of e-books. Well, for us it's very simple: Although there’s so much hype around e-books, books printed on paper still dominate the book market, and we want them to be as environmentally sound as possible.

Their share is still relatively small, but you can find a growing number of books printed responsibly and we hope this initiative will bring more exposure to such books. Through this campaign we want to encourage publishers to increase their green printing options and readers to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books.

One of the important forces behind the progress made so far in the book industry and the growing number of books that are printed in an eco-friendly manner is Green Press Initiative (GPI).

GPI is supporting the Green Books Campaign and we asked our friends at GPI to tell us about their work with the book industry and the progress the industry has made in the last decade.
Their website is also a great resource to learn more about the environmental impacts of the book industry and the solutions and we included some links you are welcome to look at below.

Green Press Initiative (GPI) is a non-profit program committed to reducing the environmental impacts of the book industry. For nearly 10 years, GPI has worked collaboratively with book publishers and their suppliers to reduce pressure on endangered forests, protect forest dependent communities and minimize greenhouse gas emissions.

As a result of the efforts by Green Press Initiative and leaders in the book industry, there has been significant progress as is outlined below:

- Approximately 50% of publishers (by market share) have environmental policies in place

- Nearly 230 publishers have endorsed the Book Industry Treatise on Environmentally Responsible Publishing or developed a policy with similar goals

The Book Industry Environmental Council has established an industry-wide goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 20% below 2006 levels by 2020 with a long term target of an 80% reduction by 2050.

- Post-consumer recycled fiber in book papers has increased from 2.4% in 2004 to 13.3 percent in 2007.

- Many publishers have been able to significantly increase their use of recycled fiber or FSC certified paper without significant cost premiums.

- Nearly 50 new paper grades with strong environmental attributes have been developed in response to the demand from publishers with environmental policies.

GPI has played a leading role in helping to educate book industry stakeholders about the social and environmental impacts of the book industry as well the solutions that can help reduce these impacts. Towards this end, GPI has worked with publishers, book printers and paper manufacturers to increase the use of recycled fiber and paper that is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council which guarantees that it is sourced from well managed forests.

Green Press Initiative has worked with nearly 230 publisher to develop environmental policies or endorse The Book Industry Treatise on Environmentally Responsible Publishing, which outlines environmental goals for the book industry. This treatise has also been endorsed by six paper manufacturers and nearly 30 printers.

In another efforts to catalyze progress in the book industry, GPI founded and now coordinates the Book Industry Environmental Council (BIEC). The BIEC consists of many of the largest book publishers, book printers and paper suppliers as well as a number of nonprofit organizations that have a focus on the book industry.

The BIEC provides a multi-stakeholder forum to discuss and implement plans to track and reduce the environmental impacts of the book industry, including setting an industry wide greenhouse gas reduction target, developing a plan to reduce the number of books that are landfilled, and developing a system to annually track key environmental metrics of the industry.

To learn more about Green Press Initiative or solutions to reduce the social and environmental impacts of the book industry please visit

We want to thank again GPI for their support of the campaign and assistance in getting the word out!

More links on their website:

The impacts of the book industry:

1. On endangered forests

2. On climate change

3. On people

Solutions - Responsible paper

The Book Industry Treatise on Environmentally Responsible Publishing

Book Publishers toolkit for responsible paper use

The Campaign's page is .You can also follow the campaign on Facebook and twitter.

Raz @ Eco-Libris
Eco-Libris: Promoting green reading!