What can you as an individual do to promote environmental papers? Plenty! Here are some examples:
- Buy recycled copy paper. For printing and copying needs, buy recycled paper. Look for high levels of post-consumer content (at least 30%). Talk to your coworkers and see if you can get your office to switch to recycled paper as well! Check back soon for a toolkit to help you through the process of implementing change in the workplace.
- Switch to recycled content tissue paper. It is especially important to purchase recycled content tissues and toilet paper since none of these products are recycled again after use. Recycled tissue paper is made from other paper products like office paper, and the use of the fibers in tissue is the last time those fibers will be used. More information.
- Buy recycled when purchasing school supplies for kids. Calendars, notebooks, folders, and nearly all other school supplies are available with recycled content. Talk with your children about why it is important to buy recycled. More information.
- Ask the magazines you subscribe to if they are printing on recycled paper. Include a note with your next bill payment or send a note separately. Be persistent. Send a note to the catalogs you receive, too.
- Include a note with your credit card, utility, and loan bill payments asking if they are printing on recycled paper. Every person who tells them about recycled paper is helping to push for change. If enough people are vocal, change will happen.
- Ask your bank if they are using recycled paper. Bank statements, receipts, and forms can all be printed on recycled paper. Talk with your bank about how you can help support them switching to recycled.
- Check with your kid's school about use of environmental papers. There are many ways to increase the use of environmental paper in schools, including switching office use, departmental use, and janitorial supplies. A toolkit to help you identify and implement changes is coming soon!
- Ask your local newspaper if they are printing on recycled paper. Newspapers use a huge amount of paper, and printing on recycled paper together with good collection systems for old newspapers can reduce unnecessary waste.
- Talk with your place of worship or other spiritual center about paper usage. Many spiritual leaders are beginning to talk about the need for individuals to be responsible consumers. Help nurture this trend.
- Talk with your local recycling program to ensure that they are supporting good paper collection practices.
- Explore Conservatree's website, and get educated about the issues and talk with your family and friends. Keep your social network informed about paper issues and work with everyone to improve consumption practices.
Conservatree is a project of Social and Environmental Entrepreneurs (SEE).
Copyright 1988-2015 Conservatree
Next time you send in a bill, include a note asking whether bills are printed on recycled paper. Do this with credit card statements, utility bills, magazine bills, and bank transactions. Ask for a response, and follow-up if you do not get one. We have created an easy, printable insert that you can sign and put in the envelope. Or write your own. And remember - print or write your note on recycled paper!
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