Paper comes from trees, so every time we have to make new paper, we are cutting down trees. Almost 50% of wood is used for paper. Recycling could free 100 million acres of forest.
Wood that is unsuitable for lumber is used for paper. 17 trees can produce 1 ton of paper. Bark is removed, trees are chipped, processed and broken down to fibers then washed, then pressed and dried.
Paper manufacturing pollutes the environment. Producing 1 ton of paper creates 84 lbs of air pollutants, 36 lbs of water pollutants and 176 lbs of solid waste. Disposing of paper pollutes again as air pollution from burning or ground contamination from landfill leakage. Recycling paper uses 60% less energy than manufacturing paper from virgin timber.
Paper can be recycled into writing or printing paper, newsprint, roofing products, building insulation, fiberboard and other construction materials, fruit trays, flower pots, egg cartons, craft paper, tissue, cardboard, packing material, animal bedding, and more.
7,500 trees are used for the Sunday edition of the New York Times each week.