Saturday, April 28, 2007

Green Design

I am working on a major new project at work--the rethinking of a planner we did two years ago, as well as two other publications that will be wrapped into it. Since the green movement finally seems to have gone mainstream, this seems like an opportune moment to take the Cradle to Cradle and sustainability questions to the fore.

The question of paper is an easy one. Finding good recycled papers and synthetic papers takes little effort. If I truly want to think the whole process through, however, I need to look at even the corporations and their facilities--from Mohawk's wind-powered paper mills to Neenah/Fox River's considerable efforts at waste-free manufacturing.

Then there is the question of printers, namely finding a printer that can print and bind 18,000 160-page books with the least amount of waste and emissions. There is also the question of writing specs for wire bindings and ink that meet the ethical standards.

Finally, there is the question of design, and it is likely that some of these other considerations will influence the design itself.