Joins with ForestEthics to promote a national registry to stop junk mail

THE ISSUE: E-mail spam may be the new, paperless way for marketers to annoy you, but many purveyors of unwanted solicitations still annoy the old-fashioned way– by daily filling Americans’ mailboxes with tons of superfluous, forest-destroying junk mail.

Now you have a chance to stop junk mail from piling up, and to save trees in the process.

TO TAKE ACTION: Visit and sign the petition to stop junk mail. So far nearly 65,000 people have put their names on the list.

You may also download a PDF version of the report Climate Change Enclosed! at

IN DEPTH: According to the new ForestEthics report, Climate Change Enclosed! Junk Mail’s Impact on Global Warming, each year in the United States some 100 million trees are sacrificed to produce an estimated 6.5 million tons of sales pitches, most of them printed on paper made from virgin wood pulp.

The great bulk of this unsolicited, generally unwanted junk mail ends up in landfills, a complete waste of natural resources.

Moreover, the production and delivery of some 100 billion pieces of junk mail in the U.S. each year comes with a huge carbon footprint. The process contributes to the release of more than 51 million metric tons of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.

Now Forests Forever joins with ForestEthics to support the “Do Not Mail” campaign aimed at helping people liberate themselves from the glut of junk mail. Opting out of the junk mail stream would have an immediate positive impact on the planet.

“At home I must recycle a bushel-sized pile of junk mail per week,” said Forests Forever Executive Director Paul Hughes. “It’s a disgraceful and outmoded practice, to destroy whole forests for that.”

The “Do Not Mail” campaign proposes the creation of a National Do Not Mail Registry, similar to the hugely successful National Do Not Call Registry that came into force in 2003. That program, administered by the Federal Trade Commission and enforced by the Federal Communications Commission and state law enforcement officials, gives corporate telemarketers up to 31 days from the date you register to stop calling you.

The National Do Not Mail Registry would usher in a similar rule.

Just as “Do Not Call” freed people from unwanted corporate phone solicitations, “Do Not Mail” would allow people to opt out of receiving junk mail from corporations.

Similarly, “Do Not Mail”, as with “Do Not Call”, would exempt non-commercial surveys and solicitations from nonprofit organizations, charities, and political campaigns.

According to the ForestEthics report, the 51,548,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases created each year by junk mail equal the CO2 released from more than 9 million average passenger cars, or 11 coal-fired power plants.

Along with ForestEthics, Forests Forever endorses strategies for marketers to reduce paper use, including reducing the size of catalogs, switching to lower weight papers, maximizing online ordering, and maximizing the use of recycled fiber in catalogs and direct mail.

In addition, these groups share the goal of assuring that all virgin fiber used in paper production comes from sustainable forestry operations certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.

For more information about Forests Forever’s campaigns to safeguard California’s forests, visit our website at

To learn more about ForestEthics, visit


Forests Forever:
Their Ecology, Restoration, and Protection
John J. Berger

from Forests Forever Foundation
and the Center for American Places