Planting a Paper Trail: Doing our Part to Offset the Impact of Paper Products

There’s almost a paradox in publishing a magazine about embracing an outdoor lifestyle. As an organization, our bread and butter is publishing stories about the outdoors and how to conserve natural spaces. And yet to tell those stories, we rely on the pulp and paper industry.


Photo: Juliet Tanas

words: Nelson Phillips

So what’s a magazine to do? We already print on Forest Stewardship Council– (FSC) certified paper. (We looked into 100% recycled, but found that chlorine and other chemicals used in the process made it, in our opinion, more problematic than FSC paper.) We encourage conservation awareness, and follow the Bruce Trail Conservancy’s take-onlypictures-leave-only-footprints dictum—but that’s not enough.

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In May 2017, the ML Blue Mountains crew got together with Aquatic Biologist Sarah Campbell of the Nottawasaga Valley Conservation Authority to plant trees in an effort to offset our carbon impact.


Photo: Juliet Tanas

Armed with shovels and buckets filled with cedar and spruce seedlings provided by the NVCA, we tackled a floodplain section of Black Ash Creek on the eastern edge of Collingwood. The waterway is a recovering trout spawning ground and like all other creeks and streams around here, feeds and helps to maintain the overall health of Georgian Bay and the Great Lakes.

What’s better, the whole ML team came ready to. roll up their sleeves—publishers, photographers, writers, editors, distributors, salespeople, bookkeepers, interns, and assorted young ‘uns.

The aim is to make our offering every year, so eventually we’re responsible for a surplus of trees—many more than we’ve felled over the years. We may not be there yet, but knowing we’re actively contributing to the life and vitality of the local environment gives the crew a renewed sense of why we do what we do.