Emissions from pulp and paper mills, like the one shown
above, are the
fourth largest industrial source of greenhouse
gases in the United States.
Though not often associated with global warming, the paper
industry is the third or fourth largest source of industrial greenhouse
gas emissions in most developed countries. In fact, paper has impacts
all through its lifecycle as outlined below:
- Each Year More than 20 million trees are consumed for production
of book papers and about 95 million tress are consumed for
- Deforestation is the source of 25% of human caused greenhouse
- Over 40% of the global industrial wood harvest is used to make
- Forests that have been cleared and allowed to regrow do not
store as much carbon as an undisturbed forest. In one study in
Ohio, a forest that was cleared and allowed to regrow for 70
years stored only half as much carbon as a nearby forest that had never been disturbed.
- The pulp and paper industry is the 4th largest emitter of
greenhouse gases among U.S. manufacturing industries.
- The paper industry contributes 9% of total carbon dioxide
emissions from manufacturing.
- Paper makes up 26% of landfills. Degradation produces methane a
greenhouse gas with 23 times the heat trapping capacity of
- Landfills are the source of 34% of methane releases—the single
largest source in the U.S.
Book Industry Environmental Trends and Climate Impacts Report – This report takes an in depth look at the book industry’s impacts on
climate change, and environmental trends in the industry.
Guide to Reducing Climate Impacts– A guide for those in the book and newspaper industry to reduce impacts on climate change
Energy Conservation Factsheet – A factsheet with details on how businesses can reduce their energy
consumption and impacts on climate change
Paper Calculator – Developed by
Environmental Defense, this toolk can help you calculate the
environmental impacts and benefits of using different types of
Guide to Paper and Climate
This report, developed by metafore, provides a detailed overview
of the impacts of paper on climate change, and offers
suggestions to reduce these impacts.
Going Carbon Neutral: A guide for publishers – A guide for publishers to calculate, minimize
and offset greenhouse gas emissions.
State of the Industry
Summary – An in-depth report by the
Environmental Paper Network which looks at environmental impacts
of the paper industry, and tracks recent progress and trends.
What You Can Do to Help the Industry Meet Environmental Goals – A Q&A with Book Industry Environmental Council Members Todd Pollak and Pete Datos