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Justice News
Saturday, 31 January 2004 14:03

Some people suggest that they're unwilling to invest in conservative measures like the Kyoto Protocol because of the uncertainty of the economic investment that is required. I suggest that, collectively, we can't afford not to invest in environmental health. Economists might suggest that this is highly speculative, but investment is always speculative - that's how the market economy works. It's about supply and demand. The market supplies whatever consumers demand. They don't necessarily care whether or not it's good for us, or them, so long as it puts money in their pockets. Individuals have some power to influence the decision makers, through letter writing campaigns, boycotts, and as shareholders with votes, but we have even more power through lifestyle choices that reflect our concern for the quality of life o­n this planet.

1. Reach For Unbleached

2. Metropolitan Fine Printers

3. Horizon Publications

4. EcoSoft

5. Rainforest Web

6. EcoSource

7. Non Wood Paper

8. Vision Paper

9. RAN Green Campus Plan

10. More Green Websites



Janine Bandcroft ? 2002

Over a decade ago I learned a simple, and profoundly important concept that helped me understand the absolute necessity of conserving wilderness.

It's called photosynthesis, and this is how it works:

Anything that is naturally green derives its colour from something called chlorophyll. Chlorophyll helps living things absorb sunlight so they can perform photosynthesis and create their own food supply. Anything with chlorophyll is called a 'producer', and range from tiny algae and diatoms in water environments to huge trees in forests.

Producer plants take in sunlight, water (H2O), and carbon dioxide (CO2) and use those to produce sugars (C6H12O6) with which to feed themselves. Like humans and other animals that have leftover waste after they've taken the nutrients from food, plants emit oxygen after consuming their food supply. So, they're dependent o­n carbon dioxide to help them make their food, and they release oxygen as a waster product after they've finished 'eating'.

Humans inhale oxygen, and exhale carbon dioxide. We are dependent upon green producer plants to release oxygen so we can breathe, and they take the carbon dioxide we emit to help them build their food. Natural relationships that are mutually dependent are called symbiotic. We depend o­n each other for survival. Some people think nature is o­nly hostile, but there are lots of examples of symbiosis in nature.

Global Warming results when the symbiotic relationship between humans and plants is thrown off balance. In addition to the carbon dioxide that humans release into the atmosphere, cars and factories and machines that use fossil fuels also release huge amounts of carbon dioxide. At the same time, the forests are disappearing and the oceans are increasingly polluted. There is more carbon dioxide, and less producer plants to process it into oxygen. Additionally, carbon dioxide traps the sun's heat and causes a greenhouse effect o­n the planet.

The consequences of global warming are unpredictable. The last time the earth's atmosphere warmed substantially the glaciers melted and re-shaped the geology of much of the planet.

Some people suggest that they're unwilling to invest in conservative measures like the Kyoto Protocol because of the uncertainty of the economic investment that is required. I suggest that, collectively, we can't afford not to invest in environmental health. Economists might suggest that this is highly speculative, but investment is always speculative - that's how the market economy works. It's about supply and demand. The market supplies whatever consumers demand. They don't necessarily care whether or not it's good for us, or them, so long as it puts money in their pockets. Individuals have some power to influence the decision makers, through letter writing campaigns, boycotts, and as shareholders with votes, but we have even more power through lifestyle choices that reflect our concern for the quality of life o­n this planet.

You can tell children that you tried to make a difference. Following are some excellent, easy, and satisfying lifestyle change suggestions (with many thanks to Sarah Webb's Guide to Greener Living and Guy Dauncey/Patrick Mazza's Stormy Weather: 101 Solutions to Global Climate Change <<http://www.earthfuture.com>http://www.earthfuture.com>- both printed o­n old-growth free paper):

1. RETHINK: Reconsider your priorities. Many people suggest that they can't afford to buy recycled or tree-free paper. The government suggests it can't afford to fund schools and health care. It's not so much a matter of affordability, it's about priorities. What's really important?! Organic food costs a bit more, but can you really afford to ingest foods connected to the petro-chemical industry that is sponsoring war and genetic engineering and pouring fossil fuel based pesticides and fertilizers o­nto the earth and its water supply? Recycled and tree-free paper costs more money, but isn't it worth knowing that your report or poster or flyer has absolutely no connection to the destruction of old-growth forests? In addition to being 'producer' plants that are beneficial to humans, complex green ecosystems have a right to exist for their own sake. Scientists are still categorizing new species they're discovering in old growth forests.

2. REDUCE: Evaluate your 'wants' versus your 'needs'. Simplify your existence and purchase o­nly what's necessary, being careful where you shop and who you give your money to. Avoid purchasing products with excessive packaging. Compost. Use both sides of the paper. Save water by putting filled plastic bottles in your toilet tank. Take shorter showers, turn off the water when you're brushing your teeth. o­nly wash full loads of laundry, and hang it up to dry. Set your computer to 'sleep' mode when it's not in use. Screensavers waste power and can be harmful to the computer's technology. Turn off the lights when you leave the room.

3. REUSE: Carry a mug for coffee or tea, and a plastic container with a sealable lid for takeout salads and sandwiches. Take plastic bags back to the grocery store and use them again. Buy bulk. Carry cloth bags for groceries. Remember that plastic is derived from fossil fuels, and those are products of oil extraction which contributes greenhouse gases to the atmosphere, encourages wars around the planet, and causes oil spills that kill those magical little oxygen producing green creatures in the oceans. Buy from thrift stores or yard sales, contribute to thrift stores, have a yard sale. Buy paper products, including toilet paper, that's made from recycled or tree-free materials. Use recyclable batteries.

4. RECYCLE: Over the past decade there has been a tremendous resurgence of recycling facilities. My parents were born in England during the 1920's, and my father remembers collection bins for food scraps along the streets of a London suburb. Methane powered vehicles were used to collect the food scraps and deliver them to farmyards to feed the animals. For some reason post-war society was tremendously wasteful - plastic was suddenly plentiful, and all sorts of disposable products became available. Then people began to realize that there is no 'away', and recycling bins and facilities began to reappear during the late 20th century. It's good to recycle, but it's not enough. Unless people purchase the products that are constructed from recycled materials, what's the point? Sure, we can recycle almost everything nowadays, we could potentially recycle the entire planet. But if nobody buys the recycled products, then we're not really any better off. And be careful - that recycle symbol o­n paper doesn't mean it's 100% recycled. In Canada it can be placed o­n paper products that contain less than 50% recycled content.

5. REINVEST: Money is power. Who are you giving your power to? I predict that soon a generation of children will emerge whose first priority is salvaging the remnants of what used to be a very beautiful planet. Wind and solar power, an organic vegetarian food supply, cycling lanes, electric vehicles, and public transit will become priorities. Non-toxic cleaning supplies (like vinegar!) will replace corporate chemical-based products. They'll refuse to pay taxes for war and environmental degradation, and they'll support community based agriculture and forestry practices that are sensible and sustainable. They'll refuse to eat their animal friends, they'll respect privacy, they'll reject those poisonous pornographic websites, and they'll actually share, like they learned in nursery school.

David Suzuki wrote, in Inventing the Future, that "we are blinded by deeply held beliefs and values, while all around us the signs of environmental degradation are legion. We must reinvent a future free of blinders so that we can choose from real options" (xiii). o­ne of my English teachers used to express his concern about our lack of choices. We can choose from a hundred different breakfast cereals, he would say, but a person attempting to buy a car has o­nly the option of gasoline powered vehicles. David Suzuki published his words in 1989, and Bob was my English professor in 1990. At about the same time an Ecology teacher told me that a group of white collar scientists had published a report suggesting that the human species has about 30 years in which to radically change the ways we live o­n this planet, or experience profound change imposed upon us from an unhappy planet. That was over a decade ago, so we're down to 20 years, according to those scientists. It's not about doom and gloom, however, it's about confidently embracing the power of imagination that is nurtured in children, and discouraged as 'idealism' in adults, and creatively envisioning the sort of world that is beneficial to all.



Jay Ritchlin, Program Director, Reach for Unbleached!

Christianne Wilhelmson, Clean Air and Water Program Coordinator, Georgia Strait Alliance

Where were you o­n October 17, 1994?

For many people in the lower mainland, it's likely a day that doesn't stand out from any other. But for residents of Powell River and the nearby Sliammon First Nation, this date is remembered for how close these communities came to disaster.

On that day, 600,000 litres of toxic chlorine dioxide gas was accidentally released from a nearby pulp mill, and o­nly favourable winds protected these communities from serious harm. Eight years later, we commemorate that incident as Pulp Pollution Day and continue to look for solutions to ensure that avoiding environmental and human health disasters is not just a matter of luck.

The impact of pulp pollution o­n the human and environment health is as relevant today as it was eight years ago. Air pollution from pulp and paper mills still affects local communities? health and water pollution still has

toxic effects o­n fish and other marine life. Also, potentially disastrous spills like the o­ne in 1994 are still happening. In June there was an accidental release of chlorine dioxide gas at the Howe Sound Pulp and Paper

mill near Gibsons. A chlorine dioxide spill in Washington State in July forced the evacuation of the local town and netted Weyerhaeuser a $10,000 fine, the maximum possible under existing law.

Pulp pollution issues can be complicated and confusing. Measuring progress is difficult especially when the industry often takes o­ne step forward, then o­ne step back.

For example, NorskeCanada?s mill at Elk Falls, near Campbell River, recently had some of its pulp certified as eco-friendly, because it is created from 85% "waste sawdust" left over from the sawmill. It is o­nly the second kraft pulp product to gain this certification.

The mill deserves to be commended for this and should be encouraged to look elsewhere for other energy-saving and waste-reducing options. However, this positive step stands in contrast to its recent application to burn coal to power its boilers.

This coal permit has numerous problems that are detailed in the public record o­n the application. If allowed by the Ministry of Water, Land and Air Protection, the permit has the strong potential to result in negative health and environmental consequences province wide. With an estimated cost saving of $3,000 - $4,000 a day, NorskeCanada's three other BC mills are said to have applications awaiting the results of this o­ne. Mills across BC could then follow suit.

We know people are concerned about these problems because they call our organizations asking what they can do. The issues are complex and sorting out the facts from the fabrication can be overwhelming. Most people don?t have the expertise to redesign the local pulp mill, or make technical presentations in favour of stronger regulations and enforcement, but they do care.

So this Pulp Pollution Day, we'd like to offer o­ne solution that shows how everyone can play a part and make a difference.

The solution is in the choices we make about the paper we all buy and use.

First: Reduce, reuse, and recycle. It's old news, but it is still critically important.

Second, make conscious choices about the paper products you buy. Ask for and buy recycled, chlorine-free paper. Tell your store managers. Ask them to give you the option of buying products that are made with high recycled content (60% or more) and no chlorine-based bleaches. These products exist for most types of household and office paper.

Third, encourage companies to do a better job of complete and accurate labelling. Often, when you try to buy recycled, chorine-free products in retail outlets, it?s hard to know if what you?re buying is as environmentally responsible as you imagine. This confusion often means people don't buy the greenest products.

This apparent "lack of a market" is often put forth as justification for not producing chlorine-free products. Over the past 4 years, Reach for Unbleached! has coordinated a paper buying club for recycled, chlorine-free office paper, and the $120,000-$200,000 in annual sales - along with the recent growth to over 1.3 million tons per year of pulp and paper products certified as recycled and chlorine-free by the Chlorine Free Products Association - proves that the market does exist.

Further demand from consumers will help expand this market.

Consumer choice is an incredibly powerful tool. If enough of us ask for recycled, chlorine-free paper, any good company will want to supply it. This demand will help them justify the costs of making environmentally responsible changes to their mills that will result in less air pollution and fewer toxins in our rivers and oceans.

None of this is to say that governments should not write good environmental regulations and enforce them, or that people concerned about their health and the environment should stop urging mills to be better neighbours. We just thought that this Pulp Pollution Day we'd offer a solution that's within everyone's reach.

Reach For Unbleached! and the Georgia Strait Alliance continue to work for the clean production of pulp and paper and the elimination of toxic contamination from BC mills.


Buying Club members in BC* can choose between Badger 100% recycled or New Life 80% recycled copy paper. There are some differences in the two papers, but the performance of both is guaranteed by the mills. Both sheets are acid free and excellent copy paper for all equipment, including photocopiers, laser and inkjet printers.

Order Deadlines Quarterly - Nov. 15th, Feb. 28, May 31, August 31

The Office Paper Buying Club makes it easy. How it works:

1) Place your order for o­ne box or more of Buying Club office paper (5000 sheets) at: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or phone 250-935-6992. Be sure to include your complete address, including delivery address for 9-5 Monday to Friday, your phone number, fax, and email.

2) We will fax you an invoice for the paper, delivery, taxes.

3) After we invoice you, put your cheque in the mail to Reach for Unbleached! Box 39, Whaletown BC V0P 1Z0 (The Club operates o­n pre-payment, which keeps our expenses low).

4) About two weeks after the closing order deadline, the paper will be delivered to your door.

5) Be sure and mention to all your friends and correspondents that you are using recycled chlorine free paper. When they decide to switch as well, our Club will grow until we can order our own paper.

Why a Bulk Buying Club:

- Lower the price and simplify access to alternative paper.

- Prove to manufacturers and distributors that a market exists

- Create enough demand to convince BC mills that this is the kind of paper they should make

The Buying Club is facilitated through Reach for Unbleached! charitable activities. Your prepayment is essential to assure our purchasing level and keep prices as low as possible.

* SORRY In the rest of Canada we can o­nly supply New Life, with deliveries in TORONTO o­nly. Other areas we usually must ship by mail at a cost of $25 per case.

Jay Ritchlin

Program Director

Reach for Unbleached!

"Working for Clean Air, Clean Water and Clean Paper"

# 708 - 207 West Hastings

Vancouver, British Columbia


phn: 604-879-2992

fax: 604-879-2272

eml: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

web: http://www.rfu.org



Metropolitan Fine Printers is widely regarded as a leader in commercial printing. o­ne of North America?s most awarded lithographers, the printer has earned an international reputation for its outstanding work, technological leadership and exceptional customer service. The company has grown steadily since its 1977 inception, recently expanding its services to the Pacific Northwest, California and Hawaii.

Metropolitan offers printing services for a wide range of projects, from complex eight colour art reproductions to high-end brochures and promotional packages. Special finishes and innovative solutions for complex design ideas are also hallmarks of its unique capabilities.

Outside the print shop, Metropolitan has won high praise for its corporate culture and commitment to the community. As a family-run business, the company continually strives to create a model work environment for its employees, encouraging open communication, skill enhancement workshops and o­ngoing education. An excellent benefits package and profit sharing system are also offered.

The people at Met are strong believers in supporting the community in which they work. As a result, the company has supported over the years dozens of community initiatives, charitable organizations and non-profit groups through sponsorship, donations, and donations-in-kind. A strong advocate for the environment, Met also runs a rigorous recycling program and follows strict guidelines to avoid environmental risks.

Contact: George Kallas, President

Metropolitan Fine Printers

1435 East Pender Street

Vancouver, British Columbia

Canada V5L 1V7

T: 604 254 4201

F: 604 254 5175

This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it




Described by the Watershed Sentinel as "100% post-consumer recycled fibre, whitened without chlorine compounds."





'Eco' because it's made from 100% recycled wastepaper. 'Soft' because recycled doesn't have to be rough. Bay West put the two together to bring you premium towel and tissue products that meet the demand for recycled products, while continuing to meet the customer's need for softness and quality.




Conservative estimates indicate that at least o­ne out of every three trees harvested today ends up as pulp.

Ancient forests are often the victims.

Sometimes 1,000-year old trees are sliced up and shredded into chips, shipped across entire oceans, o­nly to be chemically pulverized, bleached, and flattened to satiate the world's ever-increasing appetite for paper products. The good news is that alternatives do exist.




Recycled Paper is made from both virgin tree-fibres and recycled fibres with o­ne exception, and that is 100% post-consumer paper which is made from 100% recycled fibres. Therefore, trees are still cut to make most recycled paper.

In general, fibres are separated from the other materials when paper is recycled. The leftover "sludge" contains unwanted toxic residues such as pigments, heavy metals and other ingredients from printing inks and adhesives. It is estimated that 100 tonnes of recycled paper generate 40 tonnes of toxic sludge causing major disposal problems.

Finally, The quality of a recycled paper tends to be less desirable due to shorter fibres and other impurities.

For tree free paper:





Reducing the demands o­n our remaining old-growth forests by providing and promoting alternative fibre paper products.




Vision Paper is a small, innovative company that has taken a clearly unique approach to paper.

Our mission is to make the most environmentally positive products possible.

Vision Paper works with U.S. farmers to grow an annual row crop called kenaf. We use the kenaf as our raw material instead of trees. We manufacture pulp and paper, without using any chlorine compounds.




We'll provide you with materials and support to get your campus to go tree-free!

Together, we can work to save the most endangered forests by demanding that universities, corporations, and municipalities o­nly do business with forest products companies that have agreed to the following demands:

1. No logging or selling of wood products from old growth forests.

2. No logging or selling of wood products from public lands in the United States.

3. No new conversion of native forests to plantations.

4. No chipboard or oriented strand board (OSB) from virgin tree material.

5. No development or planting of genetically engineered trees.

This guide is intended to empower university activists to change purchasing practices at their schools through systematic elimination of endangered forest products at their universities. It was borne out of the experience of the Bloomington Rainforest Action Group's campaign to end old growth purchases at Indiana University.

Keys to a successful campaign:

* Be organized;

* Look and act professionally;

* Stay focused!

* Communicate! Keep in touch with your colleagues, let us know what you're up to.

Students led the three-year campaign to convince Home Depot to stop selling old growth and phase out all endangered forests. Now, students can join a campaign to save forests o­n their own university campuses. The solutions already exist including:

* 100% Recycled Paper

* Tree-Free Paper (kenaf, hemp, and agricultural waste)

* Recycled Wood or Plastic Composites

* Certified Sustainably Harvested Wood Products

We don't have any time to lose. An International Botanical Society study shows that, at current rates, two-thirds of the world's plant and animal species will become extinct by the year 2100. Habitat destruction from logging is the leading cause of this mass extinction. 80% of the world's old growth forests are already gone. Your university, and you, as its customers, can stop being a part of the problem, and join the campaign to stop buying endangered forests.


Contact Rainforest Action Network: (415) 398-4404; Free the Planet: (202) 547-3656; or the American Lands Alliance: (775) 786-1658 if you need any help, and to let us know that you've joined the campaign.



Tree Free and Recycled Paper Products

ReThink Paper


Conservatree - for information o­n alternative papers, including a North American database o­n mills producing book and magazine grade papers with recycled content


The SimpleLife Guide to Tree Free, Recycled and Certified Papers


Recycled Paper Coalition


Paper Choice (Gabriola Island):


For more, search o­n "paper" at:


Chlorine Free Products

Reach For Unbleached


Chlorine Free Products Assn.


Environmental Products, Varied

Environmental Choice/Canada - EcoLogo-authorized Products - EcoLogo


Construction Product Databases

For information o­n alternative construction ideas


California Integrated Waste Management Bureau

Recycled Content Construction Product Manufacturers


Buy Recycled Business Alliance (National Recycling Coalition)

Recycled Content Commercial Construction Products List


Certified Wood and Wood Products

Silva Forest Foundation - for further information o­n certified wood


FSC International


Certified Forest Products Council


Recycled Products

Used Building Material Association (UBMA)


Global Recycling Network


California Integrated Waste Management Bureau

Recycled Content Products Database


The Official Recycled Products Guide (subscription)


US Environmental Protection Agency - Recycled Product Content Standards for Federal Agencies, Product Information


Further information about the World's Ancient Forests, Rainforest Ecology and Companies logging the Temperate Rainforests of BC:

Friends of Clayoquot Sound


Forest Action Network


Greenpeace Canada


Sierra Club of BC


Coastal Rainforest Coalition


World Resources Institute


The Polis Project


Western Canada Wilderness Committee

Victoria chapter: http://www.wildernesscommitteevictoria.org

Vancouver (main office): http://www.wildernesscommittee.org

Resources for Sustainable Cities:

Urban Ecology:


Centre of Excellence for Sustainable Development:


Centre for Sustainable Cities:


Cities as SuperOrganisms:


Civano, Tucson:


EcoCity Builders:


EcoCity Cleveland:


European Sustainable Cities Project:


Five E's Sustainable Cities:


Green Communities Assistance Kit:


Hamilton-Wentworth (Canada) Vision 2020:


London 21 Sustainable Network:


Oakland Ecopolis:


San Francisco's Sustainable City Plan:


Santa Monica's Sustainable City:


Sustainable Chattanooga:


Sustainable Seattle:


Sustainable Urban Neighbourhood:


UN's Sustainable Cities Program:


Whyalla EcoCity (Australia):




"What is the use of a house, if you haven't got a tolerable planet to put it o­n?"

Henry David Thoreau


Activist News is a volunteer project distributed o­nce in a while. I do not send attachments.

Please feel free to forward the newsletter to your friends and colleagues. If you wish to contribute to the editor financially, or intellectually, any amount will be graciously received and distributed in a socially responsible manner. Your donation is not tax deductable, however I will forward a receipt if you include a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Thanks!

Janine Bandcroft (B.A., B.Ed.)

#407, 1939 Lee Avenue


B.C. V8L 4W9.


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Last Updated on Saturday, 31 January 2004 14:03

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