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Green Challenge

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Looking for our Dream Green Team

PJ wants to hear how your newspaper has reached out into its local community and actively encouraged readers to get involved in protecting our environment.

Sustainability is becoming the watchword as the world becomes more environmentally sensitive. And we at PJ want to applaud those in our industry who are making a difference, thanks to their unique ability to reach out to readers.

In coming months PJ pages will also run stories on newspapers and publishers up and down the country who are stepping out to reduce green footprints and protect the environment.

Said PJ editor Gary Cullum in launching the Green Challenge: “We especially want to hear about initiatives aimed at, and involving, newspaper audiences. This is where the industry can have most impact.

With 40 million copies of regional and local newspapers read each week, 10 million national daily copies and more than nine million national Sunday copies in a United Kingdom of almost 62 million, the power of news print is phenomenal.

“We should be harnessing this power to take a huge environmental message straight to our national, regional, and very local audiences. And this is part of the aim of the PJ Green Challenge.”

Over recent years, PJ has run a regular environment column designed to be an outlet for all the great environmental initiatives in which UK newspaper organisations are involved.

We have heard a great deal about ISO 1400 awards and occasionally we have had stories that demonstrate how newspaper companies have gone above and beyond the call of duty and the legislative demands on environmental initiatives.

But it should not just be about what newspaper organisations are doing themselves to protect the environment; there should be much more emphasis placed on how newspapers use their unique position within the community to encourage their readers and communities to protect the environment.

The Green Challenge has two primary aims:

  • To show how newspapers are reaching out into the community to encourage their readers to actively initiate local green projects designed to protect the environment
  • To showcase newspaper publishers’ and printers’ own environmental initiatives and projects.

Recent winners of The Newspaper Awards’ Environmental Newspaper Company of the Year award show just how newspapers can make a real difference in the community. The 2010 winner was the Green Team from Exeter’s Express & Echo. This was an initiative aimed at young people involved in environmental campaigns and raising awareness of green issues across the local community.

Part of the Kent Messenger Group’s winning entry in 2009 included a Treehuggers waste paper collection scheme, and in 2008 the Express and Echo was commended for supplying readers with environmentally sound shopping bags for life, while Trinity Mirror Printing in Newcastle launched a Go Green Campaign.

But surely this is just scratching at the surface. With environmental issues so high on everyone’s agenda there must be more newspapers which are involved with outward facing initiatives designed to encourage the protection of the environment. And if there aren’t, there really should be.

PJ wants to hear from you. We want to hear how you are encouraging your readers to protect our environment. It doesn’t need to me a massive project costing thousands of pounds, it could be the smallest initiative.

We undertake to publish what you have achieved – which, hopefully, will encourage other newspapers, publishers and printers to come up with their own projects and ideas.

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