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Publishing and the Environment: Compassiviste Publishing Says Change Is Possible

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Publishing and the Environment: Compassiviste Publishing Says Change Is Possible

In a cozy corner of a café, a reader flips through the pages of a hardback book, the scent of fresh ink mingling with the aroma of coffee. Across the room, another reader taps their tablet, diving into the world of an e-book, with every swipe revealing a new chapter, a new adventure.

These two seemingly mundane scenes represent one of the publishing industry’s most pressing issues: environmental impact. This juxtaposition of experiences raises a crucial question: Can the publishing industry adapt to the demands of our time, balancing the allure of physical books with the urgent need for environmental sustainability?

Compassiviste Publishing, a socially conscious publishing company, believes the answer is a resounding yes. Founded in 2022 by Ali Horriyat, Compassiviste Publishing pioneers a new path that harmonizes the joy of purposeful reading with environmental stewardship that holds the key to a more sustainable future.

The Environmental Toll of Traditional Publishing

For centuries, the printed word has captivated readers, offering a tangible connection to stories that have shaped the collective consciousness

However, this beloved tradition comes at a steep environmental cost. The publishing industry’s staggering carbon footprint is estimated at over 40 million tons of CO2 annually in the United States alone. The publishing industry cuts down approximately 32 million trees annually to produce books, contributing to about 14% of global deforestation attributed to paper products.

According to the World Wildlife Fund, much of the pulp used in publishing is derived from non-sustainable forest management practices or outright illegal logging operations. These trees are often taken from natural and tropical forests rather than managed plantations. This unsustainable practice destroys natural habitats, severely affecting both animal and plant species that depend on these ecosystems.

“The traditional publishing model exacts a heavy environmental toll,” says Horriyat. “Today is a crucial time for us to rethink how we produce and consume literature. We can champion more innovative ways and tap new processes to preserve our planet for future generations.”

The Publishing Industry and the Law

Aside from its environmental impact, tThe traditional publishing industry has long been entangled with issues of illegal employment and child labor. “Unfortunately, much of the books we find in major bookstores today are not bound in the UK or US, but in faraway countries, under unethical conditions that many are unaware of,” Horriyat explains. In many developing countries, including Bangladesh, children are illegally employed to assemble books, performing tasks such as binding and gluing under hazardous conditions for meager wages.

Despite international labor standards and local laws prohibiting child labor, enforcement is often weak, and many children work in conditions that jeopardize their health and development.

Going Digital: Is it Good or Bad?

Digital publishing offers a promising alternative to traditional methods. It eliminates the need for paper, ink, and physical distribution, significantly reducing resource consumption and waste. While digital books are not entirely free from environmental costs, they still present a more sustainable option. Research indicates that the average print book emits 7.5 kg of CO2, suggesting that digital reading can substantially reduce one’s carbon footprint over time.

Horriyat adds, “If you read an average of four books a month over five years, you reduce your carbon footprint by more than a tonne by reading digitally. And if you fill your Kindle to its 15,000-book limit, your carbon footprint is reduced by a whopping 99.99%.”

Some may argue that e-books also subtly contribute to digital footprints as they involve buying a new electronic device. However, reading a digital book does not mean immediately going out to buy a new reading device. E-books from publishers like Compassiviste Publishing can be accessed and read on standard smartphones, tablets, or computers.

Preserving the Joy of Reading

Despite shifting to purely digital formats, Compassiviste Publishing still preserves the joy of reading. They support new and unsigned authors, particularly those from disadvantaged and diverse backgrounds, ensuring readers hear a wide range of voices.

Compassiviste Publishing curates a diverse collection of fiction and nonfiction that explores social, cultural, and environmental themes and inspires collective action to address the world’s most pressing issues. For example, the publishing company’s theme for its June anthology is “Mental Health in the Modern World.” The anthology issue features stories of everyday people around the globe, highlighting how they approach different life challenges.

Compassiviste Publishing’s founder, Ali Horriyat, also participates in the call by sharing his personal stories of compassion through his book, The Adventures of Compassion: Stories to Harmony. 

“Our goal is to share our message with as many people as possible,” says Horriyat. “We believe that great literature has the power to change minds and attitudes, and we are committed to producing quality stories that resonate with readers.”

When Reading and Helping Collide 

Compassiviste Publishing is committed to environmentally friendly practices and is deeply rooted in social action and philanthropy. Every book it publishes supports the Compassiviste Foundation, which promotes social justice and environmental sustainability. This unique perspective reimagines publishers’ roles in the 21st century, transforming them from merely distributing content to actively participating in global change.

Despite this noble goal, Horriyat understands that some prefer lighter, more enjoyable reads to escape today’s stressful world. Therefore, Compassiviste Publishing continuously finds creative ways to address social topics while keeping the content fun and engaging.

An excellent example of this approach is Robert Kingett’s memoir Pass the Salt, which offers an entertaining reading experience while shedding light on critical social issues such as ableism and discrimination.

Compassiviste Publishing recognizes that all of us, whether by writing, donating, or sharing relevant information, play a massive role in making society a more compassionate and equitable place. They aim to inspire a global movement of change-makers in the literary world, ready to participate in the social fight, one e-book at a time.

Global Banking & Finance Review


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