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Blog: Green Forests, Cool Planet

Archive for the ‘Healthy Forests’ Category

AIDS Walk New York saves trees!

Thursday, May 14th, 2009

It’s that time a year again - flowers are in bloom, bees are buzzing, and New Yorkers are about to take to the streets for the city’s annual AIDS Walk. This year’s AIDS Walk New York will take place on May 17th in Central Park and will draw over 45,000 walkers who will raise funds to benefit the Gay Men’s Health Crisis and other tri-state area AIDS service organizations.

What’s more, many of these walkers have registered for the AIDS Walk Green Walkers Program. Green Walkers agree to opt-out of printed and mailed materials related to the AIDS Walk event and instead do all of their registration, fundraising, and communication about the walk online. This saves paper and postage, which means that more money will go toward to HIV/AIDS prevention and care. What a great way to save trees and help in the fight against AIDS!

~Margie

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An eco-friendly and economic way to move

Tuesday, March 17th, 2009

If you are on the move to a new home, a new job, a new life, check out Box Quest, a company that helps you to find and buy used moving boxes and packing supplies in your local community. Some people sell their boxes for cheap and some give them away for free.

You might also want to check out Freecycle, a network of regional email lists through which individuals give away stuff, including moving boxes and just about any other thing you could possibly need. Each of these web sites allows you to search by locale, so you can find your recycled boxes as close to home as possible.

Once you’ve moved and unpacked, you can use these sites to sell or give away your boxes to other folks. Keep the cycle going and keep the trees in our forests!

~Margie

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Stopping Junk Mail Is Like Taking 9 Million Cars off the Road

Tuesday, August 19th, 2008

New research shows that junk mail’s contribution to climate change equates to nine million cars on the road, or the heating of nearly 13 million homes for the winter! That’s a huge amount of greenhouse gases — all entirely unnecessary.

This new figure, reported by the respected nonprofit organization ForestEthics, is more than three times the previous estimate. It gives us all even more motivation to stop junk mail right now!

Download the report at: http://donotmail.org/downloads/ ClimateReport.pdf

While you’re at it, take a minute to sign Forest Ethics’ petition asking for the creation of a national Do Not Mail Registry, like the very successful Do Not Call Registry, at DoNotMail.org.

~ Carolyn

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Canada takes giant step to protect the boreal forest – for all of us!!

Monday, July 28th, 2008

Exciting forest news from Canada that affects all of us: Premier Dalton McGuinty has banned all mining and logging in half of the boreal forest (an area half the size of California!) and restricted the other half to a “sustainable development” plan worked out with First Nations (a coalition of native people). The policy helps address climate change, since the boreal forest is a major carbon sink, absorbing about 12.5 million tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere each year.

The area to be protected (more than 86,800 square miles) is home to the largest untouched forest in Canada and the third largest wetland in the world. It has remained virtually undisturbed by human activity since the glaciers retreated, home to only 24,000 people. It’s one of the world’s largest intact ecosystems, with more than 200 imperiled species such as polar bears, wolverines and caribou as well as migratory birds.

According to Forest Ethics, right now Canada’s Boreal Forest is being logged at a rate of 2 acres a minute, 24 hours a day. U.S. companies consume more than half of all the trees logged in the Boreal — and much of that goes to produce catalogs and junk mail. No doubt, this amazing forest is much more valuable than junk mail!

You can do your part to protect the Boreal by participating in Greenpeace’s Kleercut campaign. They’re working to persuade Kimberly-Clark (the parent company of Kleenex, Scott and Cottonelle brands) to stop using virgin forests to create these tissues and use recycled paper instead. Greenpeace has put together a cool Kleercut campaign kit you can use to replace Kleenex in your home, business or school with recycled alternatives.

So, use your handkerchief with pride and make sure your employer, health club, school system, movie theater chain, etc. etc. are using toilet tissue made from recycled paper.

~ Carolyn

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Paper industry coalition paints a rosy picture of our forests

Wednesday, May 14th, 2008

Thanks to an email from a paper industry employee, I got plugged into the Abundant Forests Alliance. A group of major paper and wood corporations have come together to paint a very rosy picture of our forests. They have up-beat slogans like “Renew. Reuse. Respect. (SM)” and “Plant it forward.” and “family forest owners.”

And amid the growing public support for renewable energy, they refer repeatedly to the forests as a “renewable resource.” Sounds terrific, doesn’t it?

My favorite is this one: “There will always be plenty of trees, plenty of wood, and plenty of paper to enhance our lives while protecting the environment.”

It would be terrific if the picture painted by the industry were real in ecological terms, not statistics. (Can you measure forestlands in acres and equate an acre of monoculture seedlings with a thriving old growth forest??) Many of us have walked through clear-cut forests. Even more of us have flown over the Northwest and seen the vast scars from clear-cutting. We’ve seen erosion from poor forestry management harming our streams and rivers.

We can’t be fooled by a page of statistics. These are not healthy, natural ecosystems.

Nevertheless, the timber industry deserves credit for improvements in their practices and their increasing support for FSC-certified wood (Forest Stewardship Council certified for sustainable growing practices). Globally, FSC certified forests represent the equivalent of 7% of production forests.

Imagine if the environmental community had the combined marketing budgets of International Paper, Weyerhauser and more… Ah, what healthy forests we might have!

~ Carolyn

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Plant Trees for Earth Day – We’ll all breathe a little easier

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2008

Happy Earth Day! Yes, it goes without saying — for those of us at 41pounds.org, every day is Earth Day. Still, it’s a powerful tradition to dedicate a day, week or month (depending on your stamina!) to the planet.

Congratulations to American Forests on your New York Times coverage last Sunday. We are proud to partner with them and excited about the impact we can have by working together.

41pounds.org is helping American Forest plant nearly 4 million trees in sites across twenty states and four continents during 2008 as part of their Global ReLeaf campaign.

When you sign up with 41pounds.org to stop your junk mail, and select American Forests to receive the $15 donation from 41pounds.org, American Forests will plant 15 trees on your behalf. Those 15 trees will absorb five tons of CO2 over a lifetime of 55 years.

That’s a cool way to celebrate Earth Day!

~ Debbie

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The Treeless Squirrel – a video.

Saturday, March 15th, 2008

We recently learned about a new video, called The Treeless Squirrel (YouTube link). It speaks for itself — about the many benefits that trees bring to all living creatures and critters on this earth (including us).

You may not think that the 1.7 trees that you receive in junk mail each year make a difference — you can just recycle the paper. But did you know that one tree alone can absorb between 120-240 pounds of pollution and gases — like carbon dioxide — per year?. And a single tree produces nearly ¾ of the oxygen required for one person. Those trees work hard for us, not to mention — I like hiking through them! And think about how many animals make trees their homes.

When you sign up with 41pounds.org, in addition to keeping those trees in the forest and out of your mailbox, you can also have trees planted on your behalf. Our three tree planting partners, American Forests, Trees for the Future and Friends of the Urban Forest will plant trees for you if you choose one of their organizations to receive a donation.

The squirrels will thank you!

~ Debbie

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