Teen Green: Paper, Post-its, and Napkins

15 08 2008

In the course of one day, I use at least 2 napkins, a couple post-it notes, and countless scraps/sheets of paper. I’ve been told this is wasteful, and in fact, it is: the average U.S. person generates 2 lbs. of paper waste per day and uses 10,000+ sheets of printing and copying paper every year. Consequently, paper waste makes up over 40% of North American landfills. There are a couple easy ways to decrease the consumption of paper:

1. Confession: I am a compulsive doodler. When I doodle, taking up a whole page at times, it’s extremely wasteful. So I know this is pretty obvious, but using less paper is the easiest (and cheapest) way to help the increasing use of paper products.

2. If you cut something out of a piece of paper, leaving “useless scraps” behind, don’t go straight to the recycling bin; keep a pile or bin on your desk or on your counter at home. The scraps are great for leaving reminders, shopping lists, to-do lists, really anything.

3. If you must buy post-it notes, buy them recycled. Post-it makes recycled products, which still look like their colored selves, but are much less harmful for the environment than the originals. Also, you can buy recycled printing paper and napkins as well (you can find these recycled paper products at Staples and SeventhGeneration.com).




One response

15 08 2008

One thing I do to help reduce the amount of paper I use is to write all my lists on the back of recipts.
It doesn’t sound like much, but it does make a difference in how much you go through.

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