The European Association of Science Editors (EASE) is an international community of individuals and associations from diverse backgrounds, linguistic traditions and professional experiences in science communication and editing.

EASE Environmental Policy

In this page we present the EASE Environmental Policy, outlining the actions we are taking as an association to conduct ourselves with an awareness of environmental issues. You can download this policy as a pdf here.

In addition to our own activities, our Statements & Resources pages includes an Environmental Manifesto in which we offer suggestions for how editors can take steps to reduce the environmental impacts in their own particular circumstances.

Environmental Policy Statement v2.0

Most recent update: February, 2020

The European Association of Science Editors is in agreement with the overwhelming scientific evidence of global warming. Recent reports published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change demonstrate the urgency to act now to avoid the worst consequences for the biosphere and hence for humanity.

As an organization EASE has made considerable steps to reduce the impact of its activities on the environment over the past 10 years. Much of this was driven by a need to reduce costs, but these steps have also significantly reduced the Association’s carbon footprint.

Secretarial functions

For a number of years now, EASE has made significant steps towards utilising digital media, e-mail, the EASE website (www.ease.org.uk) and social media, for all its communications.

  • Invoices for subscription renewals, advertising etc are all raised and sent electronically
  • Receipts and remittance advices are produced and sent electronically
  • Banking is done using online facilities, and reconciliations are done on a shared spreadsheet without the need to print physical statements
  • All correspondence with members is undertaken by e-mail, only a handful of physical letters are received each year.

The secretariat of EASE is undertaken by a freelancer working independently from their own premises. Usually this is either their home, or within the secretary’s existing employer’s premises. This means that there is little additional strain on the environment from the EASE secretariat’s activities.

Publications

The main EASE Journal, European Science Editor, has been published in print format until the end of 2019. However there has been an increasing shift towards readers accessing it digitally via the dedicated ESE website. The ESE Journal moved to an open access online platform in 2020. The new EASE Digest will continue to be produced in print in the mid-term, but we will seek to adopt environmental sustainable print and distribution methods.

EASE has various other publications which are all available digitally:

  • The Science Editors Handbook is published in print in a soft back edition and made available digitally to members via the EASE website
  • The Author Guidelines are available digitally to download from the EASE website and have been produced in many different languages. These are not available in print.
  • The Tool Kits for Authors, Peer Reviewers and Editors are similarly available digitally but not in print.
  • A monthly e-newsletter was introduced in 2018 and is sent electronically via Mail Chimp.

Meetings

EASE holds a number of meetings each year:

  • Full Council – 2-3 per year
  • Editorial Committee – 2-3 per year
  • Programme Committee – 6-8 in a conference year, 2-3 in
    non-conference years
  • Specialist topic groups, eg Peer Review, Gender Policy –
    2-4 per year
  • Regional/geographic groups, 2-4 per year

Nearly all of these meetings are held by webconference.

In a conference year, the AGM and other committee meetings are held in conjunction with the conference to allow for a face-to-face meeting at a time when lots of the participants are together anyway. In a non-conference year, EASE tries to build a smaller meeting around the AGM meeting on the same basis. This means that the need for face-to-face meetings to be held, involving travel, accommodation and subsistence costs (both financial and environmental) have been reduced to just once per year.

Conferences and workshops

In 2020 the EASE Conference is on the theme of promoting sustainability and diversity in research: the role of editors. EASE plans to extend the environmental theme across the whole conference, with the following initiatives being explored:

  • Having meat free catering throughout the conference, to raise awareness
  • Minimising single use plastic and providing recycling points
  • Providing an environmentally friendly gift, utilising local produce where practical
  • Reducing the amount of print produced for the Conference, and using digital media wherever practical
  • Encouraging delegates to off-set their carbon flight costs, by providing a method to pay for it during registration
  • Encouraging members to be able to join the Conference virtually as well as in person
  • Using hotels, venues, caterers and suppliers with sound environmental policies and practices
  • Attracting sponsorship from companies/organisations with a sound environmental policy and practices.

Further considerations

Whilst all the initiatives outlined above are commendable, there is still more that could be considered as we move forward in the new decade.

  • Consider the implications for printing the EASE Digest and any other print media on recycled/FSC paper
  • Consider distribution methods, eg avoid plastic wrappers and unnecessary carrier sheets
  • Encourage members to seek sustainable travel options, eg train, whenever possible, and to pay for carbon off-setting for any flights and travel
  • Be more environmentally conscious when dealing with suppliers of all types, questioning their environmental policy and including this in any analysis of cost/quality services
  • Be more environmentally conscious when attracting sponsors
  • Network with like-minded organisations in order to increase the impact of our activities and share costs and resources.