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Recycled Paper V Environmentally Friendly Paper

The first thing that you must realise in this debate is that recycled paper is not in fact recycled. It is in fact remanufactured paper from recycled wood pulp, which is an industrial process. Not only this but also, much more carbon is created remanufacturing paper than making from scratch using virgin wood pulp.

Let me explain. You have collected some paper together. This is then either collected from you in small quantities or you drop it off at a recycling centre along with lots and lots of other people, all burning fuel. This paper is then taken in small quantities (please remember in paper terms a lorry load is a small quantity ) to a recycling factory where it undergoes an energy intensive remanufacturing process, to turn it into new paper.

Now compare this to an environmentally friendly paper. For every tree felled another is replanted. What’s more only growing trees soak up large quantities of carbon. Once they are mature they absorb a lot less. The felled trees are then shipped by sea or floated down river to paper mills where they are turned into paper. What’s more the largest concentration of mills are in Scandinavia, so much of the energy used is hydro electricity.

Much less carbon is used producing paper from virgin pulp than remanufacturing old paper. The only advantage of using remanufactured paper is that is does save on land fill.

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