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[greenyes] Reducing paper use

I find the literacy statistics especially interesting. Were they developed
before or after the widespread dissemination of computers [in the developed

I know computerization has led to more paper consumption, not less (as
anticipated), because people can easily reprint entire documents after
making a few edits. My own goal continues to be the paperless office, and
I'd like to see schools head this way, too--though paper use is probably
very important in the early grades as kids learn to read and write.

One way I cut down on paper use is by not owning a fax machine. Instead I
use an electronic fax service ( The nice thing about eFax
(aside from it being free as long as you don't exceed 12 pages per month,
then it's $12/month and you can send, too), is that you receive faxes
through your email account, so you can get them at any time (without
worrying about whether your phone/fax line is free or turned on), including
while traveling. Also, the faxes stay on your computer as .tif files, so
you always have access to them as long as you have a laptop with you. You
can easily convert them into PDFs to forward to others, or you can import
pieces of them into other docs as clippable images. I choose scanned docs
over paper ones any day. (That's it for my commercial plug!)

I also almost never print draft docs before the finals are due. I think the
"Print Preview" command in most programs is as good a proofing tool as a
physical copy. As far as editing docs with other people goes, we rely
heavily on MS Word's "Track Changes" tool, so we don't have to print drafts
over and over. Saves expensive printer ink, too.


On 4/29/04 10:37 AM, RicAnthony@no.address at RicAnthony@no.address wrote:

> Here's an interesting information on Paper use published by Worldwatch
> Institute. You could download the report from:
> The United States produces and uses a third of the world's paper. Forests in
> the
> southeastern U.S. now supply a quarter of the global total.
> The average U.S. citizen uses more than 300 kilograms of paper annually, and
> the
> average Japanese uses 250 kilograms. People in developing countries, in
> contrast,
> use only 18 kilograms of paper a year on average?in India, the figure is 4
> kilos,
> while in 20 countries in Africa, it's less than 1 kilo. (The United Nations
> estimates
> that 30-40 kilos is the minimum needed to meet basic literacy and
> communication
> needs.)
> Producing one ton of paper requires 2-3 times its weight in trees. Newly cut
> trees
> account for 55 percent of the global paper supply, while 38 percent is from
> recycled
> wood-based paper, and the remaining 7 percent comes from non-tree sources.
> The pulp and paper industry is the world's fifth largest industrial consumer
> of energy
> and uses more water to produce a ton of product than any other industry.
> Making paper from recycled content rather than virgin fiber creates 74
> percent less
> air pollution and 35 percent less water pollution. Yet the share of total
> paper fiber
> coming from recycled material has grown only modestly from 20 percent in 1921
> to
> 38 percent today.
> The group Environmental Defense estimates that if the entire U.S. catalog
> industry
> switched its publications to just 10-percent recycled content paper, the
> savings in
> wood alone would be enough to stretch a 1.8-meter-high fence across the United
> States seven times.
> The Gutenberg Bible, the first and second drafts of the U.S. Declaration of
> Independence, and the original works of Mark Twain were all printed on hemp-
> based papers.
> Ricanthony@no.address
> San Diego, California


Jennifer Gitlitz
Research Director, Container Recycling Institute

Home Office:
2 Pomeroy Ave.
Dalton, MA 01226
Tel. (413) 684-4746
Mobile: (413) 822-0115
Fax: (413) 403-0233
Email: jgitlitz@no.address

Container Recycling Institute headquarters:
1911 N. Ft. Myer Dr. #702
Arlington, VA 22209-1603
Tel. (703) 276-9800
Fax: (703) 276-9587

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