it’s not easy being green

There is no escaping the fact that we all have a negative impact on the environment in terms of carbon production. As a publisher of a magazine we also have to face the fact that printing 25,000 magazines, eight times a year has a particularly bad impact on the planet, especially considering the wasteful nature of the newstrade industry. We are not a big publisher with deep pockets able to fund expensive environmental projects but we have done our best to look at all aspects of what we do and try and come up with some ways to lessen our impact. This page is where we will detail just exactly what we are doing to limit our Carbon Footprint.

Paper

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an international non-profit organisation founded in 1993 to support the world’s forests.

FSC members comprise a diverse group of representatives from environmental and social groups, the timber trade, paper industry, forestry profession, indigenous people’s organisations, community forestry groups and forest product certification organisations from around the world.

It is their job to ensure that the forests are managed to protect wildlife habitat and respect the rights of local communities.

Singletrack magazine is already one of the most efficient selling cycling titles on the newstand, a fact that has driven recent distribution growth in outlets like TESCO and WHSmiths, but this move to more environmental methods of production will help us keep our environmental impact as low as we can realistically afford.

In addition we are also heavily promoting non-paper based editions available as downloadable PDF files, a method of distribution that has proven to be surprisingly popular since they were first launched over two years ago.

It is important to us that efforts are made to conserve the habitats and wild places we ride in, and rely on for our sport. The magazine publishing industry is often shockingly wasteful, a fact that we are very aware of, and we have take the decision to look at all the ways that we can realistically tighten up on the waste and at the same time lessen our environmental impact. Clearly a magazine that promotes travel around the country and overseas to ride bikes is never going to be an environmental saint but we are doing all we can to lessen our environmental impact in everything we do. This includes a new company policy to create a “carbon guilt fund”, as we realise that the amount of flights, including those paid for by the industry for press trips and the like aren’t good for the planet. But we also realise that carbon offsetting, so popular with companies right now, is nothing but a greenwash exercise. And so we’ve come up with our idea of a compromise.

Each trip will have the carbon offset sum calculated but we’ll be putting the money into our Singletrack Carbon Guilt Fund, and at the end of each year we’ll be divvying the money up and distributing it to suitable causes such as the Kona Biketown and other intermediate technology charities. A percentage of the fund will also go to support trail maintenance kits for local riders and we’ll be inviting applications to be made nearer the time.

Other green policies Singletrack have adopted include recycling ALL cardboard, paper, card and bottles from the office. We’re also in the process of switching to a renewable electricity supplier and have introduced a financial incentive scheme to encourage staff to leave the car at home and ride to work instead. One early success is Matt, our Ad Sales manager lessening his carbon footprint by refusing to shave and now sporting a beard of Captain Birdseye proportions.

Office Bike To Work Scheme

And, in a ‘Money where our mouth is’ move, Singletrack’s staff are now going to be PAID to ride to work or to get public transport. Anyone who rides in and back, or gets the bus or train, will be paid £1 per day in cash. And at the end of the year, there’ll be a cash bonus for the rider with the largest mileage (so as to reward people who have further to travel). Hey, it’s a start…

Singletrack Carbon Guilt Fund

We’ve set ourselves a tariff of £15/tonne of carbon. Judging by the plethora of Carbon Offset projects out there we have deliberately gone for a slightly higher than average cost/tonne. That means for every flight we take or business car journey we make, we will calculate our carbon total using the calculator online here at www.climatecare.org. We take the carbon total for each journey and multiply it by £15/tonne to get the total amount of money we transfer into our Singletrack Carbon Guilt Fund. This is a real bank account and the money will stay there until the end of each year when we will invite applications from suitable causes for the cash.

Skip to top