How Will Recycling Paper Help the Environment

paper recycling can have a massive impact on the environment We all place our cans and bottles in the recycling bins, but how much of our recyclables consist of paper products? If you don’t currently recycle paper (or not much of it), get into the habit of doing so. Recycling paper can really help the environment — and here’s how:

History of Paper Recycling

  • Paper was originally created from recycled rags, fishing nets, hemp, and grass by Ts’ai Lun in 105 AD.
  • Matthias Koops, an English papermaker, received the patent for paper recycling in late April of 1800. The ink was extracted from the paper and the paper was converted into pulp — which could then be made into more paper.
  • The first curbside recycling program started in Baltimore, Maryland in 1874. New York City quickly followed suit by opening its first recycling center in 1896.
  • As of today, (by weight) more paper is recycled than all of the glass, plastic and aluminum materials combined.

Facts About Paper Recycling

  • Roughly 65 percent of paper used in the U.S. is recovered for recycling purposes — that is equal to roughly 50 million tons.
  • The amount recycled today is 90 percent more than what was recycled in 1990.
  • Almost 80 percent of all U.S. paper mills use some form of recycled paper with the intent to create new paper products.

Benefits of Recycling Paper

Recycling one ton of paper can save:

  • 17 trees
  • 7,000 gallons of water
  • 380 gallons of oil
  • 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space
  • 4,000 kilowatts of energy (reducing greenhouse gases by one metric ton of carbon)

Paper recycling has been around for many years, but we can always do better to increase the amount we recycle to help the environment. For those with any recycling questions, feel free to give us a call!


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