The publishing business is hard on the planet. The sheer quantity of resources necessary to produce a single print run of books is immense. But there are many ways to save energy and minimize the footprint if a publisher has this goal in mind from the very beginning.
So, how do you tell if a publisher is environmentally conscious? Easy…just score them based on these three criteria:
Recycled paper and biodegradable glue are both earth-friendly options. Many of the glues used in book binding today are biodegradable. As for paper, many book printers now offer recycled papers among their house stocks. Recycled paper may be more expensive than a standard house stock, and a higher recycled content percentage translates into a higher price.
All paper at GumshoePress is sourced from Chain of Custody (COC) suppliers and mills. Moreover, all of our papers are individually or dually FSC, SFI, PEFC, or Green e-certified. Many of our papers also carry post-consumer waste (PCW) content.
Paper mills are huge consumers of energy. But we can use creative methods to boost production and decrease consumption. For example, accumulating the unusable scraps from trees (think bark and knots) to be burned for fuel and finding alternative fuel sources such as used tires, which can provide lots of energy. Moreover, resourceful publishers work with paper mills that are capable of producing energy in sustainable and renewable ways. For example, GumshoePress partners with mills which manufacture papers using alternative eco-friendly power sources.
At the end of the day, publishers are in the business of delivering printed material–lots of it–through retail channels. Because of the immense quantity of trees consumed every year for paper production (400 billion per year, according to Ecology.com), transportation costs and carbon footprints are legitimate concerns. But even these concerns can be alleviated when a publisher plans its business operations around transportation efficiency and waste reduction.
For example, we have several print-partners in multiple locations. These partnerships allow us to source book orders to the nearest location to the retail channel which ordered them. Localized printing reduces the pollution that would have been generated by the planes, trains, and trucks which would otherwise have delivered our books to retailers around the globe..
GumshoePress currently has partnerships with printers in LaVergne, TN, Allentown, PA, and Milton Keynes, United Kingdom. A Pacific Rim expansion is coming soon.
We are also aware of the digital revolution and offer all of our publications in eBook formats for: Kindle, Nook, iPod/iPhone/iPad, Android, Kobo, Sony, and other digital devices.