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Did you know…Vital Facts About the Paper Used in Print Products

Did you know these vital facts about the paper used in print products?

  • About 90% of paper and paperboard consumed in the United States is produced in the United States.1
  • Overall, 33% of papermaking material comes from recycled paper; 33% comes from wood chips and scrap from sawmills; and 33% comes from virgin trees.2
  • Just 11% of the world’s forests are used for paper (53% for fuel; 28% for lumber; and 8% for other uses)3
  • Trees from tropical forests are not specifically harvested for paper. Direct causes of deforestation are agricultural expansion, wood for fuel, and urbanization and roads.4

 

1Dan Burden, “Forest Profile, Agricultural Marketing Resource Center, 2009 (revised by Malinda Geisler, 2011)
2U.S. EPA, Office of Solid Waste, “Where do the papermaking materials come from?”
3International Paper, Down to Earth, “IsIt Worth Printing?”
4Causes of Deforestation, Direct Causes, Earth Observatory/Nasa (2009).

The above article was originally posted in the PIASC WatchDog newsletter – available at PIASC.org

On January 15, 2013 the PRNewswire ran an article that included more vital facts about the paper used in print products.  Some of the additional facts from that article included the following:

“In the United States, more trees are grown than are harvested and the volume of trees has increased 49% over the last 50 years.

One of the benefits that makes print on paper sustainable is that paper can be 100% recyclable.

The amount of US forestland has remained essentially the same for the last 100 years at about 750 million acres even though the US population tripled during the same period.”

Shelby Blecker from SLB Printing agrees with the articles point that consumers should include “data-driven comparative analysis of lifecycle, carbon footprint and overall environmental impact” in the choices they make to “Go Paperless in 2013”.  I don’t believe people take into account the amount of climate change responsible in the manufacturing of smart phones, laptops, computers and monitors.  Not to mention the infrastructure of servers and related cooling systems needed to maintain proper operating temperatures.  Add to this the non-biodegradable nature of these products and then compare this to a piece of paper made from tree pulp that can be recycled.  That’s why we believe it’s important to share these vital facts about the paper used in print products with all our blog readers.

 

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