Article - Reduce waste: use less office paper

Reduce waste: use less office paper

Most office consumables use up a lot of energy and resources during their life cycle and A4 reams of paper are no exception - that includes both recycled A4 paper and paper made from virgin pulp (more about that in our next post). Meaning the greenest thing you can do by far is to reduce the amount you use and to reuse whatever you can before you recycle it.

So with reduce, reuse, recycle in mind, here are our top tips for using less paper:

1. Only print out documents when absolutely necessary.

2. Make sure your printer is set to print on both sides of the paper.

3. Share hard copies of your document wherever possible rather than printing out multiple copies.

4. Select the number of pages to print in large documents rather than printing out unnecessary cover pages or non-essential information.

And here are our tips for reusing paper that’s only been printed on one side:

1. Keep sheets of paper that have only been printed on one side in a designated folder or box and keep it close by for notepaper.

2. If you have a large pile of A4 sheets you can use them to make A5 notebooks to keep your weekly notes or lists in. Fold the A4 sheets in half, choose a cover and staple together in the fold (you’ll need to use a long stapler for this).

3. If you want to get creative, things like magazine pages, your children’s artworks, old maps, or different coloured sheets of A4 make great covers and help identify the notebooks as yours.

And finally, recycle sheets of paper that have been printed on both sides rather than putting it in the rubbish and sending it to landfill. In NZ, paper reclaim companies like Officycle provide bins or boxes to collect your waste paper, depending on the size of your office, which they will come and pick up for processing.

So, those are our tips, what are some of the green office practices happening at your workplace? We’d love to hear them.

Sources: Treehugger  Sustainable Business Council

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