Recycling is Important for Sustainability, But What is The Benefit of Recycled Paper vs Tree Free Paper?
The most popular definition of sustainability can be traced to a 1987 UN conference. It defined sustainable developments as those that “meet present needs without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs”(WECD, 1987). Robert Gillman, editor of the In Context magazine, extends this goal oriented definition by stating “sustainability refers to a very old and simple concept (The Golden Rule)
During our discussion of sustainability and alternative resources we wanted to highlight the importance of a daily activity.
Recycled Paper vs. Tree Free Paper is still significant for the environmental improvement of our world. While new technologies have developed for the production of paper, it is still important to recycle what we have. A grassroots green slogan comes to mind: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
Reduce what we use
Everyone can reduce their usage. Reduction is the first step toward a sustainable future. That is because the quantity of material we use must be stored in some fashion or another.
For most, people store paper in their waste basket. The contents of which eventually fall into a landfill. You may not realize this, but every ton of trees consumed takes up three cubic yards of land space. Now, this may not seem like much, but with everything else, landfills become full of waste that could have been prevented. But that requires the first step, which is reduction.
So the next time you reach for a piece of paper, a tissue, or a magazine, think to yourself: Am I going to use the whole thing? Could I make do with less?
Take a page out of Truegreen’s book:We reuse the refuse produced by the manufacturing of sugar to make our Green2series of 100% treeless paper products, and that’s a smart way to reuse. Can you think of other ways to reuse?
Reuse what we have
People reuse things every day. The most common things people reuse are: cars, houses, clothes, dishes. They are sustainable because they are well maintained. While paper is not truly a maintainable resource, it is one that can be reused.
Sometimes we print a page off the copier that didn’t come out the way we wanted. Or we receive a piece of junk mail that immediately we threw into the trash. Often the paper we discard could be used for another purpose. Rather than using notepads and clean sheets of paper, we can reuse what we already have in our possession. The next time you have a piece of junk paper think to yourself: how can I use this again before throwing it away and filling my local landfill?
Recycle what we’ve used
The last step is to recycle what we’ve used. It’s the most observant step. However, it is also the one most neglected. Even though recycling is easy to do we see ourselves throwing out waste every day. A tin can, a glass jar, boxed paper. It’s easy just to throw it in the trash.
But it’s just as easy, if not easier to throw these same products in for recycling. When you count what you’ve recycled, and recycle everything you can, you will find that you can recycle more than you throw in the garbage.
There is one major problem when using recycled paper to make new paper products… That is the fact that all kinds of paper are dumped into the landfill and, especially paper containing BPA’s, used together to make new paper. All paper is not good to reuse. In fact, recent studies have found that paper containing BPA’s, like airline tickets and other carbonless papers, are considered poisonous. And, therefore, shouldn’t be reused or recycled!
Recycling reduces landfill space. The more space landfills consume, the greater need for municipalities and townships to find other locations for landfills. That may mean a landfill down the road from your home. And who wants to drive past that on their way home?
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