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Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Book Industry Environmental Council announces goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions

For the first time, the book industry has set goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. This week the Book Industry Environmental Council announced that they are aiming for a 20% reduction by 2020 and an 80% reduction by 2050. A posting from Publishers Weekly reports that paper accounts for 65% of the U.S. book industry’s carbon footprint and returns are another significant factor. If the industry can reduce emissions by 20%, it would save up to 2.5 million metric tons a year which is the equivalent of the annual emissions of roughly 450,000 cars. Pete Datos, chair of the Council’s climate subcommittee commented, “I have confidence we can reduce returns dramatically. We have to work together to do that in a way that is equitable for the whole industry. We have better methods to forecast, we can get books printed and shipped faster than ever before.” The announcement did not discuss e-books but we can expect that digital options will also play an important role in the industry’s effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

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