Magic on the pages: Harry Potter goes green

Endangered forests were not something the wizards at Hogwarts have had to bother about. Until now...

Published: Thursday 31 July 2003

-- (Credit: EMKAY)Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix Canadian edition

Endangered forests were not something the wizards at Hogwarts have had to bother about. Until now, that is. The latest Harry Potter title, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix , could mark a change and a shift of emphasis to more pressing concerns that affect the Muggles. The Canadian edition of the teen wizard's adventure, published by Raincoast Books, is printed on 100 per cent recycled, endangered forest-free paper -- all 935,000 copies of it. And environmentalists are overjoyed.

"By printing the latest Harry Potter book on 100 per cent recycled paper, Raincoast has set the stage for a complete transformation of the publishing industry," said Lafcadio Cortesi, director, Boreal Campaign, ForestEthics, "Readers everywhere appreciate that the magic is not just what is written on the pages, it is the very pages themselves."

And author J K Rowling was only too glad to endorse Raincoast's decision. "The forest at Hogwarts is home to magical creatures like unicorns and centaurs," her endorsement, which appears on every copy of the edition, says, "Because the Canadian editions are printed on Ancient-Forest Friendly paper, the Harry Potter books are helping to save magnificent forests in the Muggle world, forests that are home of magical animals such as Orangutans, Wolves and Bears...It is a good idea to respect ancient trees, especially if they have a temper like the Whomping Willow."

This move by Raincoast Books is predicted to save almost 30,000 trees. It is also a landmark in the effort by us and Canadian publishers to increase the use of environmentally friendly paper for their books.

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