The Facts: Print & the Environment

Print media is an environmentally conscious form of marketing and communicating.  Both print and digital media will leave their environmental footprint, but, with print, there is a one-time only carbon footprint that continues to get smaller and smaller with new types of print and paper production technology.

Of the trees harvested for production only 11 percent of trees are used to produced paper, while 28 percent is used for lumber and 53 percent for fuel (  Furthermore, for every one tree harvested, there are three additional trees planted — one of the reasons why the number of trees in North America today is actually slightly higher than one hundred years ago.

When comparing print to digital media’s environmental footprint, you’ll find that print tends to be more environmentally friendly.  For example, by burning one CD, you’re producing the same carbon footprint as printing 400 full color pages.  The energy emitted from one e-reader has the same environmental footprint as about 50 paperback books.

Finally, paper is a renewable resource — 54.7 percent of paper is recycled annually in America.  Print is not only environmentally friendly, it’s also an effective way to communicate with your target market.

Timothy Freeman
Print & Graphic Communications Association


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