News Release: January 2012

For Immediate Release | January 25, 2012
One Thousand Americans Pledge to Recycle Junk Mail, ask Mail Industry to Commit to Reducing Waste

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CONTACT: Jeff Gang, 617-747-4352, jeff@thegreenlifeonline.org
Boston – Alarmed by the huge waste of paper mailed each year as catalogs, credit card offers, and other advertisements, more than 1000 people are taking action with a new online campaign from the Green Life. The Stop The Junk campaign helps individuals reduce their junk mail, unites people in recycling, and challenges the direct mail industry to help reduce paper waste.

According to the US Postal Service, each household in America receives more than 700 advertisements in the mail a year. “Add that up, and you can see that junk mail isn’t merely an annoyance – it has a huge environmental impact. One study suggests it uses 100 million trees’ worth of paper each year!” said Jeff Gang of the Green Life.

Stop The Junk signers pledge to do their part, by recycling whatever junk mail arrives at their mailboxes. But they’re also calling for change: they’re asking the Direct Marketing Association, which sets industry-wide standards, to help cut paper waste. Together, the people who’ve signed the pledge account for more than 700,000 pieces of mail – mail that will be recycled, instead of ending up in landfills. While remarkable, this pales in comparison to the billions of pieces of mail that the direct mail industry sends each week. “Recycling is a great place to start, but if we’re going to make a difference in reducing waste, we need the Direct Marketing Association to help out,” said Gang. “Reducing waste isn’t rocket science. We’re asking direct mail companies to do same things most Americans are already doing to reduce waste. Start by reducing the total amount of paper used – especially paper from unsustainable logging. Then reuse whatever you can, and recycle the end product,” Gang said.

Stop the Junk calls on the Direct Marketing Association to “take the lead in reducing waste:
* Track and report to the public the overall volume of paper used by member companies.
* Create a one-stop, industry-wide system for opting out of junk mail, like the Do Not Call list.
* Set and follow up on industry goals for sustainable sourcing of all paper, preferring post-consumer recycled content and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification, the credible solution for sustainable logging”

In just the first seven days, 1,120 people have signed on. To join in, please visit http://j.mp/enoughjunk

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Founded in 1990, the Green Life Online is a non-profit organization that helps environmentally-aware and health-conscious citizens make effective decisions about the way they consume and the companies they support. http://www.thegreenlifeonline.org, or http://j.mp/enoughjunk