A Guide to Carbon Neutral Publishing

Green is the new black. A 2006 Pew poll found that around half of the residents of many countries were personally concerned about global warming. However, the same poll found that the U.S. and China, the largest global warming culprits, felt little worry about the issue. In 2009, this attitude is beginning to change. People want to live sustainably, even in the word’s most commercial countries, so more and more sustainable products and services are being offered. Now, customers can choose everything from hybrid cars to organic, hand sewn baby clothes as alternatives to carbon causing mass production. Companies and industries are making an attempt to go carbon neutral by reducing their emissions and taking measures to erase their carbon footprints.

The history of carbon neutral publishing, or at least attempts at carbon neutral publishing, begins with recycled paper. In 2008, Tyson Miller – the founder of the Green Press Initiative – worked with others to compile a report on the book industry’s sustainability. What they found was that paper accounted for the majority of the industry’s carbon output, around 70%. Magazines, journals, and newspapers that are printed in hard copy form also had to deal with this shocking news. Even through recycled paper was one attempt to curb this problem, publishers knew that they needed to do more. And that’s where attempts at carbon neutral publishing got digital.

Many of the largest publishers have begun taking their materials into cyberspace instead of sending them to the printing press. Because they’re not using paper, these companies are significantly cutting carbon emissions. Just a few of these new technologies include e-readers like those marketed by Amazon, Barnes & Noble, and Sony, which allow individuals to read books, magazines, and newspapers in digital format. According to the New York Times, the carbon emissions of these devices are neutralized after about a year of use. In addition to the fact that attempts at carbon neutral publishing such as these are improving the environment, e-readers, which allow individuals to download books the way music is downloaded for an iPod, are starting a new trend. The Association of American Publishers concludes that the purchase of e-books has risen by more than 100%!

But while e-readers are carbon efficient, they’re not completely carbon neutral. To be so, companies would have to buy carbon credits to offset the carbon used to make the readers and the carbon needed to run the computers and servers that hold the digital media and make downloading possible. In addition, the companies that market e-readers are also in the business of publishing and distributing paper books, a carbon nightmare. However, another technology provides a way for complete carbon neutral publishing. These publishers offer completely carbon neutral publishing by not only providing a forum in which writers can publish e-books and other publications online with no paper use, but also by offsetting all carbon emissions through purchasing carbon credits from Carbon Clear.

So how do you get involved in carbon neutral publishing? The answer is simple, don’t use paper, and publish your work with a virtual publisher like Libretto. Make sure you evaluate your chosen e-publisher before submitting to determine that your publisher is carbon neutral, not just carbon efficient. This means that the publisher takes all steps to completely neutralize the carbon used to run the business, which is primarily produced as a result of electronic equipment such as computers and servers. As the numbers of individuals concerned about publishing continues to grow, more and more publishers will get on the carbon neutral publication bandwagon. But until then, you can make a difference by choosing carbon neutral publishing.

Martin Alan enjoys writing on subjects such as literature, online publishing, online magazines, green publishing and self publishing. He also enjoys keeping up-to-date with the latest developments and innovations in technology and online marketing.

For more information on online publishing click here; http://www.yudu.com

Author: Martin Alan
Article Source: EzineArticles.com
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