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Public Radio's Environmental News Magazine (follow us on Google News)

Business Note/Paper Wizard

Air Date: Week of

Living on Earth’s Jennifer Chu reports on an online environmental calculator for the magazine industry.


CURWOOD: Coming up, how to make a house a home, from the very first board and nail. First, this environmental business note from Jennifer Chu.


CHU: These days you can figure out your own ecological footprint with a variety of online environmental calculators. Personal air pollution and greenhouse gas contributions can be quantified by plugging in a few lifestyle facts and figures.

Now there's a new calculator for computing the eco-impact of your favorite magazine. The Paper Wizard is a non-profit online venture. To compute a magazine's yearly tree consumption, the Paper Wizard asks for a variety of details, including page size, paper weight, page count, paper grade and the number of issues published per year. The Wizard calculates the number of trees consumed – and the number of trees that can be saved – if a magazine used a percentage of recycled paper.

Today, less than five percent of U.S. magazines contain recycled paper, and the industry as a whole consumes about 35 million trees per year. Initial results on several popular magazines showed that the fashion monthly Cosmopolitan consumes about 328,000 trees per year, while National Geographic uses about 500,000. The Paper Wizard plans to market the free online service to major magazine publishers in the next few months.

That's this week's business note. I'm Jennifer Chu.

CURWOOD: And you're listening to Living on Earth.

[MUSIC: Mad Professor, "Black Orpheus Dub" RED HOT AND RIO (Verve, 1996)]



The Paper Wizard


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