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Sustainability and Publishing Panel to discuss future of books

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February 16, 2011

The Literary Arts Institute at College of Saint Benedict is sponsoring a panel which will discuss sustainability practices in the world of publishing at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 2 at Gorecki Dining and Conference Center, CSB.

The event is free and open to the public, and comes during the Year of Sustainability at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John's University.  

Each year more than 20 million trees are consumed for production of book papers and about 95 million trees are consumed for newsprint, according to the Green Press Initiative. More than 140 publishers, including many of the world's largest, have strong environmental policies.

CSB and SJU economics professor Ernie Diedrich will moderate a panel that includes Don Leeper, president of BookMobile, a digital book printing and distribution company; Keith Goetzman, of The Utne Reader, a magazine that focuses on independent ideas and forward-thinking;  and Kelly Spitzner, communications coordinator at the Green Press Initiative, an organization which works to have newspapers and publishers be more environmentally conscious

The panelists will examine the impact of publishing on the environment, green practices at publishing companies and the controversial role of technology supporting sustainability. Diedrich is also interested in provoking discussion surrounding the future of 'solid' books, and what written words mean in their new but relatively impermanent electronic form.

Refreshments will be provided following the discussion.