How to Recycle Paper the Right Way

These days it is crucial to think more about your surroundings and the world we live in and will pass on to future generations. Many companies today commit to being eco-friendly and recycling goods correctly to make them suitable for reuse. We can aim for a zero waste role at home too, and local councils picking up our recycling makes proper paper disposal effortless. And avoid using non-recyclable wrapping paper and other non-environmental friendly options, and buy recycled paper products where possible.

The Reasons to Recycle Paper

Paper plays a considerable role in our lives, and it is an excellent type of packaging for many things because it can take up so many different forms. It can be used to package food, over for writing notes, and so on. If we constantly use it for many different purposes, the issue of proper recycling comes into play. There are several reasons why you should recycle cardboard and paper:

  1. Paper production can be very harmful to the environment, especially in the early stages of the process. Many toxins, like chlorine, dioxide, and others, are released into the environment. The waste paper recycling process is much less environmentally hazardous; fewer harmful chemicals and toxins enter the atmosphere. According to environmentalists, water and air pollution are reduced by 35% and 74% in the process of waste recycling.
  2. The processing of recycled plastic and paper reduces the amount of energy consumed by manufacturing enterprises. According to various expert analytics, implementing an adequately organised waste recycling process can reduce the amount of electricity used from 40% to 65%.
  3. The processing of cardboard and wastepaper helps to reduce deforestation. Over the past few decades, 4-5 times more paper has been used. Humanity consumes tons of paper. More than a third of all trees cut down on the planet are sent to pulp and paper mills, and only 16% of the total are trees grown specifically for the industry. Depending on the quality and type, recycling a ton can save one to two tons of wood.
How to Recycle Paper
One 500 sheet ream of paper will use 5% of a tree

Workable Paper Recycling Methods 

There are several methods used in recycling paper waste. Some of them can even be performed at home. So here are the most popular and effective ways:

  1. Use the shredder. At least it will help you to create a smaller and more convenient place to store waste paper before you have an opportunity to drop it somewhere where it can be handled.
  2. Find the nearest organisations where you can take your old, used papers, magazines, leaflets, and other waste.
  3. Implement some easy-to-do ideas on how to recycle paper right at home. This is a creative process that takes time and water. But in the end, you will get an excellent, vintage paper that is good to write on.

Home Recycling

Here is a complete description of how to recycle paper waste at home. However, it may not be applicable to magazines or glossy paper. Complete the following steps to create a new sheet:

  1. First, tear and then chop the material with scissors.
  2. After that, put it into a container, together with hot water from a kettle.
  3. Next, put the pot on the hob, wait until the liquid boils, and then turn off the heat. 
  4. Then you need to wait for the water to cool and periodically stir it with a wooden spatula. This is how the pulp (the mass used to make paper) is made from recovered paper.
  5. Then add different components to the mixture. The composition depends on what you want to create from the recycled paper. For example, when making cardboard, glue is added to the mix.
  6. When the mixture is ready, spread it evenly, then roll it with a rolling pin until it is thin. Cut it off around the edges with a knife. The cardboard will be dense, and its surface will be rough.


recycled paper options
Recycled paper and cardboard can be used in food industry paper packaging

What You Need to Know to Take Paper for Recycling

It is widespread knowledge that paper can be recycled up to 5 times. But before you take your wastepaper to a recycling company, you should understand that almost all paper products can be sent for recycling. The exceptions are items containing additional substances and materials such as:

  • glass;
  • plastic;
  • ropes and other inclusions.

The industrial process of recycling is a bit more complicated. First, it requires the sorting of all paper. Then professionals apply special liquids and substances to remove glue and metal elements. But this method has one common feature with the home recycling method- water. They both use it to achieve the pulp mass. It is one shapable substance that you can roll again and create a thin sheet layer. Sure, some organisations apply ore technology and methods to clear paper of harmful elements and make it into a purer product than you could hope to achieve at home.

To Sum Up

The point of recycling is to achieve the maximum from the materials we already use and avoid the possibility of adding new ones to our daily usage. So, if you have enough time, you can try it at home. However, if you are an eco-friendly person who does not have that luxury, find the nearest recycling centres to dispose of your paper waste and save time for more pressing matters.