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Science Makes the Switch to Recycled Paper
Science, the world's leading general scientific publication, is now being printed on recycled paper stock, an advance in green publishing for the journal.
The new paper stock is made from 30% post-consumer materials and is labeled elemental chlorine-free (ECF). ECF paper is processed with chlorine dioxide instead of pure chlorine gas, which reduces the toxic byproducts of paper pulp bleaching.
The switch, made in April, marks the end of a journey Science began several years ago, searching for a supplier that could provide the journal with high-quality white recycled paper for its graphics-heavy pages. Monica Bradford, Science's executive editor, made the search a priority after attending a session on recycled paper at the 2006 meeting of the Council of Science Editors.
"Our content makes it clear that we are pro-environment. I thought that it was important that Science practice what it preaches to the extent possible," Bradford explained. "And as AAAS [Science's publisher] is a member organization, we felt this change would be embraced by our members."
Jim Landry, the journal's production director, spent nine months talking with other publishers and examining paper samples before settling on a stock that met Science's quality and price requirements. In keeping with the journal's international reach, the new paper has a multinational pedigree of its own. The stock is manufactured by Finnish paper company UPM at its mill in Augsburg, Germany, before being shipped to the journal's long-time U.S. printers, Brown Printing Company in Waseca, Minn.
Brown was awarded Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) chain-of-custody certification for all three of its print locations in the United States in 2007. FSC certification ensures that the paper products used by Brown come from materials harvested in a forest managed according to a strict set of environmental standards. UPM also participates in the FSC program, and received the 2007 Green Supply Chain Award in North America for its fuel-saving shipping and handling practices.
The journal is now a bit slimmer, but "the most significant change that readers might notice is that the paper doesn't have a coating," Landry said. The matte paper reduces reading glare and "is easier on the eyes," he explained.
Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world. Subscribers also can peruse the paper-free version of the journal online.
2 October 2007