Environmental Responsibility

The purpose of print-on-demand book manufacturing is to reduce our environmental impact. Traditional offset printing usually requires large orders in anticipation of sales. Often, any books that go unsold are destroyed. This results in wasted paper, wasted energy, added greenhouse emissions, pulping, and landfill overflows.

At Lightning Source, books are printed in ultra-short runs or only when an order has been received. This print on demand model of book manufacturing reduces supply chain waste, greenhouse emissions, and conserves valuable natural resources.

While Lightning Source is able to produce certain books, either as Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) or Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC®)  certified products, (depending on product type and printing location) we do not manufacture books using all recycled materials.  In certain cases, depending on the services a publisher chooses, or book manufacturing sites used (other countries) the material may not be recycled material OR certified by the above bodies. 

Lightning Source expects each of its paper suppliers to be environmentally responsible as well, and not use papers sourced from endangered old-growth forests, forests of exceptional conservation value, or the Amazon Basin.

We ask that publishers do not include the certification information in their books. 


To build upon the environmental responsible forestry, our POD model, Lightning Source chose to receive these certifications:

  • Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) The FSC® Council is a non-profit organization, promoting the environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable management of the world’s forests. 
  • Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) The Sustainable Forestry Initiative is an independent, internationally recognized non-profit organization responsible for the SFI certification standard, the world’s largest single forest certification standard. 
  • Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™ (PEFC™) The  PEFC™  Council is an independent,  non-profit,  non-governmental organization which promotes sustainability-managed forests through independent third-party certification.

Lightning Source has received Chain of Custody (CoC) certification from:

  • The Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC®)
  • Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™ (PEFC™)
  • The Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®).

What is the Chain of Custody Certification?

Chain of Custody (CoC) is an accounting system that tracks wood fiber through the different stages of production: from the forest to the mill, to the paper, to the printer and ultimately to the finished book. For publishers, and ultimately consumers, CoC ensures the integrity of the paper supply chain and that the paper used in Lightning Source® printed books are from responsibly managed forests.

Lightning Source Endorsement of Chain of Custody

Lightning Source’s management is committed to the implementation and on-going maintenance of its Chain of Custody program under the regulatory standards and social responsibility goals established by SFI®, FSC®, or PEFC™.

Lightning Source has appointed Josh Dailey, its Corporate Counsel, as the Compliance Officer for the Chain of Custody program. Mr. Dailey has overall responsibility for and authority over Chain of Custody processes and controls and, as a part of his responsibility, conducts regular periodic reviews of the program and its compliance with the standards set by SFI®, FSC®, or PEFC™.

Any questions or concerns regarding Lightning Source’s Chain of Custody program can be forwarded to Josh Dailey at Josh.Dailey@ingramcontent.com.

UK Environmental Policy

Lightning Source UK Ltd is committed to improving environmental performance by driving down CO2 emissions and reducing, reusing and recycling waste.

Lightning Source UK Ltd recognizes that what we do today, affects the environment of both current and future generations and we are therefore committed to continuous environmental improvement. Our policy is to manage our businesses in such a manner as to have minimum impact on the environment in which we operate.

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