Pages tagged "publishing"


A New Chapter for the Publishing Industry: Putting Promises into Practice

pubreport_720x720We don’t get to do this as often as we would like. Today, we get to share some good news with you. Thanks to your hard work and support over the past four years, the world’s top publishers are moving in the right direction when it comes to eliminating rainforest destruction, human rights violations, and species extinction from their supply chains.

We’re publishing A New Chapter for the Publishing Industry: Putting Promises into Practice today, which outlines the shift in the entire sector as the implementation of publishers’ Indonesian forest commitments proceeds. Given the progress that publishers have undertaken in the last four years (since our 2010 report), we can confidently say that you have successfully prodded the 10 biggest publishers—and hence the whole industry—in the right direction. Click here to read the new report.

To really illustrate the point, we are pleased to tell you about two recently announced paper policies from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Macmillan. These policies go farther, in many ways, than past commitments from other companies. They demonstrate a new level of thoughtfulness and attention to detail—and a fierce commitment to eliminating controversial fiber and suppliers in order to protect the forests facing the greatest threats. Over the last four years, RAN has worked closely with publishers to develop and innovate the best practices for eliminating controversial fiber and suppliers from supply chains, and verifying and implementing forest commitments. What has emerged is a set of best practices (spelled out in the report) that could guide companies--not just in paper but in many forest commodities--in tracing their supply chains and protecting forests in the process. Of course, there’s still work to be done.

In order to translate this work to change on the ground, publishers should urge all of their supply chain partners to develop and implement strong, comprehensive paper policies. And, in particular, all companies should either stop buying (or maintain their no-buy stance) on controversial Indonesian pulp and paper giant APRIL and all affiliated companies.

RSVP to join me in a chat on May 27, 2014 to find out how you can help us keep publishers on the right track or to read the report here.

Of course, this transformative work would never have been possible without you. While much of this work has happened behind the scenes, you were with us every step of the way through your commitment to RAN and its work.


10 out of 10! RAN Brings Seismic Shift to US Publishing Industry; Next Stop: APP

Deforestation in IndonesiaWow. You know your brand is in the gutter when even Rupert Murdoch won’t buy from you because of your company’s bad reputation. But few companies have done as much to earn their bad name as Asia Pulp and Paper (APP). Responding to RAN’s campaign, Murdoch’s HarperCollins has just announced they will no longer buy paper connected to rainforest destruction, which means they will not be buying from the likes of APP. This would be major news on its own, but on the heels of Disney’s historic policy announcement to stop using rainforest-destroying paper last October, HarperCollins’ new public commitment signifies a seismic, sector-wide shift in an industry that was recently rife with controversial paper. Just over two years ago, independent fiber tests commissioned by RAN revealed paper linked to Indonesian rainforest destruction in books sold by nearly all top American publishers. Today, all top ten US publishers in the country recognize that customers will not accept books with paper that is connected to deforestation and human rights abuses. This sends an unmistakable message to forest-destroying, community-displacing paper companies like APP and APRIL that consumers are demanding they clean up their acts. Please use your voice to amplify this message by contacting APP right now to tell the company to quit logging precious rainforests to make paper. Rainforest Action Network first alerted the US publishing industry to problems in its paper supply chains in May of 2010 with a report titled "Turning the Page on Rainforest Destruction: Children's books and the future of Indonesia's rainforests". Over the following year, eight of the top ten publishers in the country, including Hachette Book Group, Pearson, and Simon & Schuster, agreed to adopt commitments to stop buying paper connected to the loss of Indonesian rainforests.Deforestation in Indonesia Indonesia is home to some of the most biologically diverse forests in the world, but it also has one of the world’s highest rates of deforestation. APP and its main competitor, APRIL, produce over 80 percent of Indonesia’s pulp and paper and are the main source of controversial pulp found globally. Both companies have caused widespread deforestation and displacement of forest communities from their land. The habitat destruction they cause is a leading threat to the survival of the Sumatran tiger, of which only a few hundred remain So, congratulations! We could not have achieved this milestone without you. And please, help us pile on the pressure by sending an email directly to APP today.  

Mickey and Minnie Protest Disney Rainforest Destruction at Company HQ

UPDATE: On October 11, 2012, Disney announced a comprehensive paper policy that maximizes its use of environmentally superior papers like recycled and eliminates controversial sources like those connected to Indonesian rainforest destruction. For more info, visit www.ran.org/disney. Early this morning, two activists supporting Rainforest Action Network unfurled a 35 foot banner across The Walt Disney Company’s two-story entrance arch that reads “Disney: Destroying Indonesia’s Rainforests.” Beneath them, Mickey and Minnie Mouse locked down to the main entrance gates to the company’s Burbank headquarters—blockading Disney’s executives from arriving to work through the main gates. Please support these brave activists by taking action today. Tell Disney CEO Robert Iger that rainforest destruction is no fairy tale. Disney: Destroying Indonesian Rainforests Indonesia’s rainforests are some of the most biologically diverse in the world and they are being destroyed at a rate of 200,000 to 400,000 acres per month. The pulp and paper industry is a primary cause of this reckless deforestation. Most of top U.S. publishers of children's books have taken strong steps to protect their supply chains from controversial Indonesian fiber, but Disney, the largest publisher of kids’ books in the world, has refused to take action. This bold action sends a loud message to Disney’s top executives that it is unacceptable for them to continue to drag their feet when they have known for over a year that paper in Disney’s children’s books has been proven to be connected to rainforest destruction and species extinction in Indonesia. For more on Disney's involvement go to ran.org/disney. Rainforest Action Network is asking The Walt Disney Company to eliminate its use of controversial Indonesian fiber and publicly sever all financial ties with APP and APRIL and their affiliates until key reforms are adopted. RAN is also asking Disney to implement a comprehensive company-wide paper policy and rigorous due diligence procedures that ensure it is rainforest safe. To follow @RANActions and @TheRightPaper on Twitter for up-to-the-minute reports on today's action. UPDATE: 9am pst. A swarm of police officers and fire trucks arrived at the Disney headquarters this morning and arrested Mickey and Minnie Mouse, using bolt cutters to break through the chains attaching them to the entrance gates. Above, a fire truck raised its ladder to cut down the banner and arrest the two climbers attached to the two story arch. The arrested activists were Christopher Toomey, Jennifer Binstock, Blake Hodges and Alexis Dickason-Soto, all residents of the Los Angeles area. The activists are in the custody of the Burbank Police and charges are pending. Though the protest lasted just short of an hour, this was time enough for helicopter and satellite news trucks to arrive and record the colorful scene.

Is the “Happiest Place on Earth” Driving Tigers and Orangutans into Extinction?

UPDATE: On October 11, 2012, Disney announced a comprehensive paper policy that maximizes its use of environmentally superior papers like recycled and eliminates controversial sources like those connected to Indonesian rainforest destruction. For more info, visit www.ran.org/disney. Young or old, when one thinks of the Walt Disney Company, the first images that come to mind are almost certainly of a favorite animated character from our childhood. From Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck and Bambi to The Jungle Book and The Lion King, Disney specializes in bringing animals to life and imbuing them with personalities that pull on human heartstrings and ignite children’s imaginations. Unfortunately, like any classic Disney tale, there is a darker side to this story, one that Disney does not want you to hear. Disney’s paper buying practices are driving some of Earth’s most iconic animals towards extinction, and so far the company is doing nothing about it. Disney is the largest publisher of children’s books in the world, producing over 50 million books and 30 million magazines a year in the US alone. Last year, Rainforest Action Network (RAN) hired an independent lab to conduct tests on the fiber found in children’s books published by the top ten US publishers. Nine of the ten tested positive for fiber linked to Indonesian rainforest destruction, Disney included. See Turning the Page on Rainforest Destruction: Children’s Books and the future of Indonesia’s rainforests. Disney kids love rainforests RAN approached each of the companies before releasing the incriminating data to allow each a chance to address this serious problem. In the year that followed, RAN worked closely with these companies and eight of the original ten have now established commitments not to source their paper from controversial Indonesian fiber. Seven of the ten have agreed to specifically avoid purchasing from the notoriously destructive logging and paper companies APP (Asia Pulp and Paper) and APRIL (Asia Pacific Resources International Limited) altogether. Sadly, Disney has lagged behind its peers and to date has offered only empty words that do nothing to ensure the company is not still purchasing paper driving rainforest destruction. Indonesia is a real life Magic Kingdom, home to some of the most biologically and culturally diverse forest ecosystems on Earth. With only 1% of the planet’s land area, Indonesia’s rainforests are home to 16% of all bird species, 11% of all plants and 10% of all mammals. This wealth of life includes endangered tigers, orangutans and elephants, the real life characters featured in Disney’s Jungle Book. Reckless logging, largely driven by demand for cheap paper products and palm oil, has threatened all of this by causing one of the world’s highest rates of deforestation. The carbon emissions from this large scale deforestation has made Indonesia the world’s 3rd largest greenhouse gas polluting country, behind only the US and China. Indonesia’s forest products industry is internationally renowned for its corruption and high rates of illegal logging, as well as for its devastating impacts on biodiversity, forest communities and the climate. The vast majority of Indonesia’s pulp and paper — approximately 80% — is controlled by two large and controversial suppliers: APP and APRIL. Over the past decade both have become infamous for their widespread, rapacious demolition of Indonesia’s rainforests and communities. It's time for Disney to realize that rainforest destruction is no fairy tale. Rainforest Action Network is putting Disney on notice, and we hope you will join us to get the company to align its practices with the values it espouses and embeds in the stories it tells. Bulldozers and chainsaws have no place in the habitat of endangered species or in the production of storybooks for children. It's time for Disney to stop doing business with nefarious bad actors like APP and APRIL and to adopt a comprehensive policy that can guarantee parents that reading bedtime stories to their kids will not make them unwitting participants in tiger and orangutan extinction. Because in the end, it was Disney who helped many of us learn for the first time, it’s a small world, after all.

Roaring at Barnes & Noble with Tiki the Tiger

http://www.flickr.com/apps/slideshow/show.swf?v=71649

Leave it to the folks at Rainforest Action Network to make anything fun. As an intern with RAN, my job is basically to do whatever task I'm presented, so when Hillary Lehr asked the interns, Lindsay, Lola, and I, to do our own Roar at the Store at the local Barnes & Noble, I thought, "Yeah, I can hand out a few pocket guides and help spread the word."  When she mentioned someone wearing our full Tiki the Tiger costume, however, I became way more excited about the idea of our own roar and volunteered right away. Really, who wouldn't want to spend two hours dancing in a tiger suit, especially for such a good cause! I got some funny looks on the bus as we made our way to the store, but as soon as we took our positions outside and began handing out the awesome Rainforest Safe pocket guides, we got a much better reception and the fun began!  Although we hadn't brought an awesome boombox or radio, I was blessed with the ability to entertain myself easily and was able to dance to the beat in my head.  Thanks to my super sweet moves, the pocket guides were going like hot cakes! Tiki the Tiger in front of Barnes and Nobles Bookstore with a sign reading People would slow down or stop by to read my sign or take a picture with me, and it gave Lindsey and Lola a chance to explain what we were about and how children's books can play a part in destroying the rainforest. What I learned from my day as Tiki the Tiger is that participating in actions can be fun! I was nervous about going out on the street and "bothering" people, but when you're having fun with it, others have fun with it, too! That great day turned out to be one of my favorite days with RAN.

Litquake Events Take on the Changing Publishing Industry and Sustainability

The publishing world is rapidly changing as technology influences where, when, and how an author goes about getting published. San Francisco’s very own Litquake extravaganza delves into this further and works to help authors navigate the new terrain. Two events directly relate to our Rainforest Free Paper Campaign and are worth blogging, talking, and tweeting about. Event: Off the Richter Scale: AltPub
  • Title: Who Needs a Publisher?
  • Location: Variety Preview Room Theater, 582 Market St
  • Date/Time: Oct 3rd, 1-2PM
This discussion analyzes the current publishing framework and questions whether authors really need to go through one of the big six publishers to gain notoriety. Thanks to on-demand and social publishing, small publishers, and e-books there are a variety of effective alternatives. Our opinion? Options are great! Some of the large publishers are buying paper from APP & APRIL, companies that are clearing and converting Indonesia's rainforests to monoculture plantations to make cheap paper. While the AltPub event offers authors advice on how to achieve literary success, we want authors to publish through environmentally friendly distribution channels - whether they be one of the big six publishers, on-demand publishing, or anything else. For more on our work, check out our report at www.ran.org/bookreport. Event: Enviro-Lit Panel:
  • Title: The Sustainable Solution to the Economy
  • Location: Beach Chalet, 1000 Great Hwy
  • Date/Time: Oct 3 6:30PM-7:30PM
Not only is technology acting as a publishing game-changer, but climate change is as well. This discussion is worth being part of, as expert panelists address this issue head-on. What economic repercussions will we face if we ignore these environmental issues? How will this affect our government and what power do individuals have to make an impact? With environmental reporter and editor of Bay Area Report for The NY Times, Felicity Barringer moderating this event, it is sure to be worthwhile. October 3rd is shaping up to be a pretty informative and inspiring day. These issues covered at Litquake speak directly to the overarching goals of our Rainforest Free Paper Campaign and we thank Litquake for being so environmentally and socially responsible!

The Earth Book - A Playful Take on Kids Environmental Activism

Getting on The New York Times Best Sellers list is an achievement that can quickly bring an author or topic into widespread awareness. Luckily for environmental stewardship, The Earth Book is helping out. Featured on our first edition Rainforest Safe Summer Reading List, Todd Parr's The Earth Book has also spent time on The New York Times List of Best Selling Children’s Books. The Earth Book has brought morals of environmental education and collective responsibility to the forefront of the children’s book industry.

In this eco-focused addition to his long series of lively, easy-to-understand children’s stories, Todd Parr uses bright illustrations and simple ideas to show young readers how important it is to be friendly to the environment. Parr’s playfully-drawn kids share the many reasons why they love the earth and what they do to help protect it: “I remember to turn off the lights and shut the refrigerator to save energy because I love the polar bears and I want the snowmen to stay cool.” The honest statements that Parr makes through the eyes of his colorful kids makes helping the planet seem exciting and important. “The earnest message springs off the page,” says Publishers Weekly.

In a way, Parr’s approach to the complex subjects of our changing climate and activism is simple without being simplistic. His relevant messages can transcend audiences of all ages and types through the poignant nature of The Earth Book children’s easy conservation commitments. Using literature to stress the importance of environmental stewardship is just one strategy within a larger movement but a useful one at that. As an environmental education tactic, children’s books can help instill important eco-friendly morals in kids at a young age and may even inspire them to become activists around environmental issues themselves.

With an increasing breadth of environmental advocacy in today’s books, it is ever-pressing that the publishing industry set an example by making sustainable printing a norm. As a sign of encouragement, Hachette Book Group chose to print The Earth Book on recycled paper with non-toxic soy inks. Having an environmentally-themed children’s book on the New York Times Best Sellers list that actually practices what it preaches is a bold statement which certainly gives us hope for the environmental stewardship potential of the publishing industry and also helps to strengthen the future generation of environmental activists.


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