The Greening of the Publishing Industry
A few paper leaders have confronted foresting head on, however. Technical Association of the Pulp and Paper Industry (www.tappi.org) developed "Forests For Our Future," a walk-through, hands-on indoor forest experience designed to educate industry and non-technical users about how the paper industry is dedicated to preserving natural wilderness.
Last year, Potlatch's 17,000-acre hybrid poplar plantation in Boardman, OR, became the first such operation in North America to be independently certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), an international, independent, non-profit organization that promotes responsible forestry worldwide. Potlatch's pursuit of FSC certification reflects the fact that segments of the U.S. market have demonstrated a willingness to pay a premium for FSC certified products.
Meanwhile, Weyerhaeuser (www.weyerhaeuser.com) was awarded "Business Recycler of the Year" for 2001 by the Tennessee Recycling Coalition. Nominated by Federal Express, the award is given annually to the company that best demonstrates a strong commitment to waste prevention and recycling. Mark Starnes, vice president of Weyerhaeuser's recycling business unit, says, "Our company is the nation's third-largest paper recycler and the largest user of recycled materials in our paper and packaging products. More than 57 percent of the content of Weyerhaeuser containerboard products comes from recycled materials. In 2000, we recycled more than 4.4 million tons of paper. That's enough to fill a freight train that stretches from Memphis to New York City."
The company acknowledges that not only do responsible publishing and paper-making practices benefit the users and vendors of print materials, but also other arms of the business. For a distributor, being able to successfully convert waste material into reusable stock can amount to saving money. The effects trickle down into two forms of green: the financial and environmental.
"Weyerhaeuser has gone to great lengths to help us efficiently recycle materials that can be reused for valuable products like our shipping boxes, company stationary and company forms," adds Karen Birkinstock, senior environmental specialist for Federal Express. "Recycling is important to Federal Express because we care about our environment. Weyerhaeuser has helped us sort through the issues and put together an effective recycling program which helps the environment and saves Federal Express money, too."