Books Vs. Trees

So books are made from trees, and there are those who think that book readers need to make environmental amends for reading. Along comes Eco-Libris, a well-meaning outfit that will take your money and put it towards planting trees. Here’s my question, though. Eco-Libris helps to fund tree-planting efforts in developing nations. Do American publishers get their pulpwood from developing nations, or does it come from domestic forests? If the pulpwood is coming from right here in the U.S., then the efforts of Eco-Libris don’t actually do anything to offset the publishing industry’s use of wood.

Which is not to say that reforestation efforts in the developing world aren’t laudable, but (if American publishers do in fact use American trees) it’s not quite accurate to say that a check sent to Eco-Libris will balance out the environmental cost of your books.

A quibble for a cantankerous evening…

One response to “Books Vs. Trees”

  1. It is actually more beneficial (in regards to greenhouse gasses) to plant trees in the southern hemisphere.Paper trees in north america are usually farmed poplar and will get replaced either way, just like any farm product.


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