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Green Textbooks: An Environmentally Responsible Choice for K–12 and Higher-Ed Publishers

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Over the past two years, many
of you have learned about your opportunity to help save trees through
environmentally responsible production and paper use. Several PMA members chose
to participate in the Green Press Initiative (GPI), and through its board of
directors, PMA officially endorsed GPI and began using recycled paper for this
publication and otherwise.


Encouraged by evidence that trade
publishers are switching to recycled paper, we believe that elhi and college
publishers can follow suit, and we have teamed up with the National Wildlife
Federation (publisher of Ranger Rick magazine) to help this happen. Many of you
may want to be part of this latest effort.


Publications that reach every
school attendee from K–12 through college and beyond clearly provide a
meaningful place to illustrate the connection between our material choices and
their impact on the environment. One state’s legal requirements say, “When
recommending instructional materials for use in the schools, each committee
shall include only materials which accurately portray, whenever appropriate,
humankind’s place in ecological systems, including the necessity for the
protection of our environment and conservation of our natural resources.” Yet
most textbooks are printed on paper that does not contain recycled or
FSC-certified fiber.


To change your paper use for
titles you sell in the education market:


Explore the issue in depth with
your production and design team.

Commit to the best practices as
identified by GPI (www.greenpressinitiative.org/standards.htm),
including increasing the use of postconsumer recycled and Forest Stewardship
Council (FSC) certified virgin fiber.

Include the GPI paper-use goals in
all pricing requests with your printers.

Work with GPI to maximize your
cost efficiencies and negotiating opportunities with your printers.

Sign on to the Book Industry
Treatise on Responsible Paper Use at <span


Will It Work?


Progress in the trade-book sector
fosters belief in the potential for change in the education sector. At this
writing, more than 100 U.S. publishers have developed policies to maximize the
use of recycled and FSC paper, and more than 75 percent of them have made
shifts in paper choices, resulting in the production of more than 6 million
books on recycled paper in 2004.


For their part, paper mills have
developed more than 20 new book papers with strong environmental characteristics
since 2001. And prices for recycled paper have dropped by 50 percent as a
result of increased demand.


GPI and the National Wildlife
Federation are building grassroots support for a paper shift involving the
educational books market. Through its Campus Ecology program, the National
Wildlife Federation is supporting students and professors at universities in
advocating for paper change with the large education publishers (see <span
Simultaneously, GPI is working with K–12 parent and teacher groups that
can urge state textbook administrators, school boards, publishers, and
suppliers to change paper requirements.


PMA president Kent Sturgis said in
his December 2004 column about GPI, “You owe it to yourself—and . . .
perhaps to the future of our forests as well—to check this out.”


For further info, contact Erin
Johnson at 301/438-3927 or erin@greenpressinitiative.org. You can also go straight
to participation at www.greenpressinitiative.org/publishers.htm.


Erin Johnson is program
manager for the Green Press Initiative and coordinates the enrollment of U.S.
publishers. She spent 20 years in management, marketing, and sales for large
trade magazines and has been associate publisher of <span
style=’font-size:11.0pt’>NAPRA ReView
, a book-trade publication
in the body/mind/spirit arena. In her advocacy role for Green Press Initiative,
she says she is fulfilling a long-time dream of working on sustainability and
environmental stewardship.


Paper Policy Has Author


We just concluded a
multiple-book agreement with Georg Feuerstein, Ph.D., the internationally
renowned scholar who wrote the award-winning <span
style=’font-size:11.0pt’>Shambhala Encyclopedia of Yoga
and 30
other books. He signed with us after looking into environmental issues for a
number of years and feeling increasingly uneasy that his books were not printed
on recycled paper. Deeply disturbed by the discrepancy between the
environmentally unsound printing methods used by his publishers and his own
spiritually based writings, he was looking for an environment-friendly
publisher for all his works.


When he discovered that
Hohm Press was environmentally friendly, he approached us about establishing a
long-term relationship for all his future works and upcoming reissues of
existing titles.


Sara Ryan





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