Buy a CD; plant a tree

By Paul Williams
March 20, 2003

The next time that you buy a CD you could be buying a CD with more than just track names and lyrics on the inside cover; it could also contain a carbon neutral logo.

A United Kingdom business called Future Forests combats global warming through neutralizing the amount of carbon in everyday products.

Carbon neutral, according to the Future Forests website, “is the point at which the amount of carbon dioxide produced by a manufacturing process is equal to the amount being removed. “For example, the Foo Fighters new CD titled, ‘One by One’ is a carbon neutral CD. The band is planting enough trees in the Tensas River forest and wildlife reserve in Louisiana to reabsorb the carbon dioxide from their CD over their lifetime.” “One by One” was the first CD by a band in the U.S. to be carbon neutral. Other artists who are involved with Future Forests include Coldplay, Feeder, David Gray, and Pink Floyd.

Heather St. Amour, a sophomore biology pre-med and pre-physical therapy major said, “It won’t solve everything with global warming but it will help a little bit. Carbon is not the only factor in global warming.”

Future Forests began combating global warming by planting trees, but they are not just limited to planting trees, or to just neutralizing the amount of carbon produced by CDs. The ambition, according to the business’ website, “is to help get us all to a world where businesses, cars and planes are as benign as trees and cities are benign as forests, which involves anything from hydrogen-fueled cars to solar heating.”

The future forests website is full of information about everyday things that people can do to combat global warming. “Did you know that 95 percent of the energy used by the United Kingdom’s mobile phone chargers is wasted energy? Only five percent is actually used to charge phones, the rest is used when the charger is plugged into the wall but not switched off at the socket.”

The creators of Future Forests are Dan Morrell and Sue Welland. Morrell had worked in the music industry as well as in advertising. He immediately had clients from companies like “Universal, Sony and Warner Brothers,” the Future Forests website explained. “Sue was involved with integrated marketing communication, global marketing and global marketing.”

Kelly Lohr, a junior secondary education major with a major in English, said, “Most people I know would never think of energy being wasted by cell phones being plugged in, or planting trees to make up for wasted energy. It seems so crazy, but it sounds like a good idea.”

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