Macmillan Publishers has a goal to reduce our carbon footprint by 65% (from our 2009 baseline) by the end of the decade. In order to do this, we have to actively work to reduce and eliminate unnecessary greenhouse gas emissions. These unnecessary emissions can come from something as small as leaving the lights on in an empty room to sending books halfway across the country only to be returned.
Being the go-getters that we are, we want to go beyond our initial sustainability goal to become a carbon neutral company for the second year in a row. Being carbon neutral means that, in theory; we do not produce any carbon emissions, which is possible thanks to carbon offsets.
Carbon offsets allow a company that cannot substantially reduce their own greenhouse gas emissions to mitigate emissions somewhere else. For example, one of our carbon offset programs involves supporting a wind farm in Northeast China. We print books in China, coal energy is largely used to make the paper and/or power the printing presses, and greenhouse gas emissions are released from burning coal. By supporting wind energy we are reducing the amount of coal that would otherwise be used to generate electricity in other parts of China. In return, the amount of greenhouse gases we mitigate through these projects around the world (carbon emissions are shared globally) help to offset our own greenhouse gas emissions.
Read about our 2014 Carbon Offsets.