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Your favorite online green printer has been selling an excellent alternative to cheap Asian coated papers for a long time.

Here is yet more evidence that choosing this recycled, elemental chlorine-free paper is a better alternative for green printing:

Coated paper is paper that has been treated with a thin coat of clay or other compound on one or both sides, giving it tremendous versatility for countless products. It is one of the fastest growing segments of the world’s paper industry and, in the last few years, its production in developing countries has expanded exponentially. Since 1990, the Chinese paper industry alone has accounted for fifty percent of overall growth in the market for coated paper.

While U.S. and Canadian manufacturers have the capacity to fulfill North American coated paper requirements, China, along with South Korea and Indonesia, currently comprise about 40% of the North American coated paper market, evidence of which can be found in the substantial weight and space taken up by Asian sourced coated paper in the world’s 90,000 container ships.

Last month, the Los Angeles Times reported that tug boats and tankers using inexpensive dirty “bunker” fuel emit more soot than previously acknowledged and contribute to thousands of deaths from particular pollution annually. In another article, the Los Angeles Times noted that in response to these findings, California has instituted the planet’s toughest pollution laws for ocean going vessels. Over the protests of Asian carriers, beginning in July 2009 oil tankers, cruise ships and container ships coming within 24 nautical miles of California will be required to burn low-sulfur diesel or face stiff fines. Hopefully, other states along the Eastern and Western Seaboards and the Gulf of Mexico will follow suit and force everyone to play by a set of rules that will benefit us all.

The health hazard of unnecessary ship pollution is just one of the many reasons to keep an attentive eye on the source of paper products you and your company use. It’s often difficult to trace the source of paper coming from outside the U.S., but a bit of probing tells wholesalers and retailers that these are issues that may affect their business. We’ve developed an “ISSUES” series to keep you current with the risks of imported paper.

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