Rupert Goes Green — Except for That Whole Using-Tons-of-Paper Thing

20070510rupert.jpg
Murdoch announcing his Global Energy Initiative in midtown yesterday. Photo: AP

Maybe John Kerry's right, and environmentalism truly isn't a partisan issue anymore. How else to explain the latest passenger on the bandwagon, Rupert Murdoch, who has just promised to take his News Corporation carbon-neutral within four years? An ultracheery news item — in the Post, of course — breaks down the massive undertaking into smaller initiatives. For instance, the 20th Century Fox lot will switch to solar-powered golf carts. The 24 crew will use biodiesel-powered generators for outdoor scenes. (That must well complement the show's commitment to recycling: How many times has Jack gone rogue? CTU been invaded? Vice-president conspired?) Apparently this should go a long way toward negating the 641,150 tons of carbon News Corp. belched out in 2006 alone. But environmentally friendly explosions aside, we can't help but notice one little problem.

In addition to the Post (daily circ over 724,000), Rupert owns the Times of London (daily circ 692,500), the Sunday Times, the Sun, the News of the World, thelondonpaper, twenty-four print titles in Australia, three in Fiji, one in Papua New Guinea, and a dozen neighborhood titles in the five boroughs. Oh, and — who are we kidding? — the Wall Street Journal soon enough. So, not to nitpick, but, uh, be as fashionably carbon-neutral as you want, Rupe. You've still got to be one of the world's biggest wasters of paper.

News Corp. Clears the Air [NYP]