Friday, March 13, 2009

Carbon Fast for Lent : Junk the Junk Mail

“We receive nearly 4 billion items of direct mail per year, one third of it unread. [In the U.K.] register your home under the Mailing Preference Service to stop wasteful junk mail. Call 0845 7034599 or visit Bonus: Request electronic bills and statements to save paper and postage.” Tearfund Carbon Fast for Lent

The idea of a Junk Mail Registry — akin the Do Not Call Registry — seems to be gaining steam in the U.S. Earlier this month the Miami Herald published an article about two sate representatives who have introduced bills proposing a statewide Do Not Mail Registry for Florida.

The Do Not Mail campaign estimates “it takes more than 100 million trees to produce the total volume of junk mail that arrives in American mailboxes each year—that's the equivalent of clearcutting the entire Rocky Mountain National Park every 4 months.” In terms of the greenhouse gas created each year by junk mail: think 2.5 cars, idling 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Today’s mitzvah: Sign the Do Not Mail campaign’s petition for a national registry allowing Americans to opt out of junk mail delivery. They also have an opt-out tool that will remove you from many of the larger mailing lists. (To take control over the catalogs you do and don’t to receive, check out Catalog Choice, which I also blogged about last year.)

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