Paper is part of our everyday life and it should be used sagaciously. In today’s electronic age, people are starting to cogitate going paperless. But there’s still a long way to mitigate our reliance on this very important human product. It is rarely considerable for us to value the process of paper production, distribution, use, and disposal which require a large amount of energy and raw materials.
From our newspapers to our paper wrappings, paper is still everywhere and most of them are ending up in our landfills creating an astounding sum of paper waste. There was a time when paper was an exceptional and precious commodity. But now our planet is replete with it. It was initially invented as a tool for communication and for promotion and transmission of heritage too, but today, paper is used more for packaging. In the case of paper making, it contains cutting down trees.
Deforestation is one of the core environmental glitches we’re facing in these times. 14% of all global wood harvest is used to make paper. It raises a very critical question, is it really worth it to cut down our life saving trees for this product? We are so used to of using these paper products in their completed form that it becomes barely for us even to review as how they are made and what happens after we dispose of them.
There are certain heart rending facts about paper must with opixaste that approximately, paper making takes an average of five liters of water to produce one piece of A4 paper. Whereas 93 percent of paper comes from trees. According to a study, the recycling one tonnes of paper saves around 682.5 gallons of oil, 26,500 liters of water and 17 trees. The packaging marks up 1/3 or more of our trash. It is terribly fatal to know that to print a Sunday Edition of the New York Times requires 75,000 trees! And all the paper which has been wasted each year can help to construct a 12 foot high wall of paper from New York to California! The 50 percent of the businesses of waste is depended on paper.
Paper pollution reasons another severe effect of paper waste. Paper mills will be producing 500,000,000 tonnes of paper and paperboard each year by 2020! Pulp and paper is the third largest industrial polluter of air, water and soil. When paper rots, it emits methane gas and more hazardous for humans than its usages.
We are required to eliminate the unnecessary use of paper and try to reduce paper waste where possible. Cutting down on our use of paper will lead to a smaller environmental impact from paper production. We can avoid printing emails and can print and photocopy on both sides of the paper, submission of Annual Income Tax Return online and can read newspapers online. We can go paperless with Electronic Bills and Statements and avoid printing ATM receipts as nowadays, many banks have used the logo of Go Green.
It is worth mentioning that causing this menacing situation, lessening of paper usage was foretold owing to the electronic revolution. But, the situation is averse as the demand for paper is expected to be doubled before 2030. Deforestation is the principal outcome of our undemanding use of paper.
There are certain concrete and suggestive steps to make an admirable headway in protecting ecologically rich forests and limiting commercial access. And it is worth happiness that it has been implemented for the greatest progress for mankind! Just imagine how long a tree will grow to its full size. We are only just realizing the wasted use of our trees – trees that give off oxygen and protect and every tree produces enough oxygen for three people to breathe. Streamlining of systems through efficient tools like online platforms or apps minimise unnecessary use and take advantage of the latest technologies like tablets, computers and smart phones to keep files and notes. Even conference/ meeting related material can be emailed before time to avoid paper use. Choosing recycled content paper made by companies that support responsible forest management also contributes to wise use.
The writer is a freelance