How many times a piece of paper can be recycled?

Home Human, Science, Technology, USA, World 02 January 2013

Paper recycling is both one of the biggest sectors of 2000s and it’s also an important attempt to save the trees and nature. It’s called as “scrap paper” if the paper is ready for recovery. It’s today possible to use recovered paper in the various sectors like pulp packaging or producing note papers. Also new technology is allowing companies to remove printing ink on the written papers so they can be used again after “deinking” process. Also reduce in the paper usage is helping to reduce energy usage to produce more paper and cutting more trees. How many times a piece of paper can be recycled?


According to experts, a piece of wasted paper can be recycled for 6 or 7 times. Especially China and other Asia countries are buying wrapped paper bulks from other countries. Such countries have not enough industry to answer the paper demand in their countries and they also want to save the forests.
Today, it’s a common belief that computers decreased the level of paper used in the business but it’s not true. According to last researches, 95% of business information is still on the paper.
It’s also possible to see that most of the paper used in business is getting waste after only one usage or one week of usage.
Newspaper Recycling

Recovery of 1 ton wasted paper means saving 17 mature trees today. It also saves 26 m3 water, 15 GJ electricity that will be used for paper producing and this energy is enough for a standard house in USA for 6 months.
Paper was used for communication and reading in the last period of 1900s. It was helping to keep paper for a long time after used and only half of the paper was going waste bin after a short usage. But today packaging is the biggest sector using the paper and most of the paper used for packaging is going to waste bin after first usage. Also computer printers became the main reason of paper wasting. According to researches, 110 billion sheets of paper are using every year for printers. It means a standard computer user is wasting 28 pages per day.
Countries like China especially buy wasted paper from USA after the Christmas and other big festivals. Every year, 40 percent of U.S. waste paper is sending to China. With this rate, waste paper shipping became the largest U.S. export to China.

It’s also an old generation to recycle paper in USA. First attemps and first paper mile is constructed in 1690 by Rittenhouse family. In the 1800s, a big demand on paper is started because of printing houses and new books. In 1896, Benedetto family opened a paper recycle center in New York City and they started to collect old newspapers and rags. Till 1990, rate of buried wastepapers were more than recycled ones in USA but in 1993, rate of recycled papers passes the number of buried ones. Today USA is recycling half of paper used in the country. According to numbers, 53.5 million tons of paper recovered in 2006. It was 33.5% in 2000. Today there are 480 materials recovery facilities in the USA working for recovery.
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Also European Union is showing big effort for paper recovery. The European converters and papermakers has a big contribution for paper recovery. In 2004, it was 54.6% that recovered from used papers in Europe. It’s now on the 64.5% level and the target is over %70. Also countries like Japan, South Africa, Canada and Mexico are making effort for more effective paper recycling.
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