Wednesday, July 25, 2007

How Much Tree is In a Book?

Guess how many trees were harvested to crate the first run of the new Harry Potter book? The first printing of “The Deathly Hallows,” 12,000,000 books in all, took 400,800 trees to make. That’s about 16,700 tons of paper. If you do the math, you’ll find that about .0334 percent of one tree is used to make one book.

I got wind of this story from
a blog post at New Scientist.

For the record, Scholastic, the Potter publisher, claims 65 percent of the 16,700 tons of paper came from “paper that contains a minimum of 30 percent post-consumer waste fiber.” That may sound like a lot (it did to me at first). But at a minimum, just 2,254 tons of the fiber is recycled. That’s closer to 14 percent of the total. That doesn’t sound like as much. But hey, Scholastic is trying. According to
their press release, “this historic commitment is the largest purchase of FSC certified paper to be used in the printing of a single book title.”

Also for the record, something I picked up from the New Scientist blog, China is a big fan of recycled paper.
So explains a BBC report. In all, China’s practice of using waste paper has saved about 65 million tons from landfills around the world.

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.