The Forest Stewardship Council is the only certification system that requires a consensus solution when conflicts arise between logging companies and indigenous communities.

More than 140 publishers, including many of the world’s largest, have strong environmental policies.

When the goals set forth in the Book Industry Treatise on Responsible paper use are realized over 5 million trees will be preserved each year.

Each pound of postconsumer recycled fiber that replaces a ton of virgin fiber prevents the release of 2,108 lbs. of greenhouse gas emissions.

In 2006, an Opinion Research Corporation poll revealed that 80% of readers are willing to pay more for books printed on recycled and environmentally responsible paper.

Over the course of its lifecycle, postconsumer recycled fiber requires 30-40% less energy than virgin fiber.

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Newspaper Implementation Guidelines


The following guidelines and recommendations are designed to serve as a basis for publishers as they develop strategies for converting to newsprint with improved social and environmental attributes. They are based upon standards developed by both the U.S. EPA and the Environmental Paper Network.

Improved paper characteristics will conserve natural resources and help to preserve Endangered Forests. Some publishers will incorporate these policies directly through changes in their purchasing policies and other publishers will implement changes through their printers.

I Maximizing Postconsumer Recycled Content

Postconsumer recycled fibers are derived from recovered paper and thus are fibers that are ensured not to be directly sourced from ancient or endangered forests. Publishers committed to eliminating the use of fiber from old growth and endangered forests in their newspapers will set goals and objectives to maximize their use of postconsumer recycled fiber.

II Maximizing the Use of Virgin Fiber Certified to the Best Standards in Forestry (FSC)

Currently the FSC [Forest Stewardship Council] certification for virgin fiber is widely accepted in the conservation community as the best practice standard for forest management. Accordingly, publishers committed to eliminating the use of paper with fiber from Endangered Forests, preventing forest conversion, and valuing indigenous rights will set goals and objectives that incorporate the recommended strategies below for sourcing environmentally preferred virgin fiber.

  • Where available, the paper will be certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).
  • If FSC certified paper is not available, publishers will encourage suppliers to use Chain-of Custody forms to track the source and origin of any virgin fiber, work in partnership to eliminate papers with fiber from Endangered Forests, and set goals for incorporating FSC fiber into paper.

Goals and Benchmarks
Publishers have the opportunity, through the products they choose and those they reject, to serve as environmental stewards in improving the production practices of the entire newspaper publishing sector. Establishing goals is the best way to provide clear signals and build alliances with the supply chain. The process for implementation will vary between publishers, however all publisher are encouraged to meet or exceed the following goals:

  • By 2012, achieve an aggregate average (based on weight) of 50% recycled content (majority postconsumer), and
  • By 2012, utilize FSC (or equivalent) certified papers, for at least 20% of paper-use.

Publishers are also encouraged to develop their own incremental benchmarks which can assist in realizing the above objectives. (For example, 40% recycled content, and 10% FSC certification by 2010; 45% recycled content and 15% FSC by 2011, etc. ).


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