Printing is a sustainable industry but people still believe print and paper are bad for the environment. We’re keen to set the record straight and show there are two sides to the story, writes Jon Hart, Regional sales and account manager at St Austell Printing Company.
Myth 1: Paper is bad for the environment
Paper is based on wood, a natural and renewable material. As young trees grow they absorb CO2 from the atmosphere. Furthermore, as a wood product, paper also continues to store carbon throughout its lifetime.
Trees play an important role in mitigating climate change by absorbing carbon from the atmosphere. Europe’s forests store almost 80 billion tonnes of carbon in their biomass. The stock of carbon in forest biomass has increased by around 3 billion tonnes since 1990. This means that forests absorb around 7% of the annual greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from the region.
In Europe forests are are growing at the rate of 15 football pitches a day.
Myth 2: Only re-cycled paper should be used
Without new fibres, from new trees, the paper cycle cannot be maintained. Recycled fibres degrade after several uses and the paper industry needs fresh fibre from responsibly managed forests to keep the renewable cycle going.
Europe is the world leader when it comes to recycling paper. 72% of our paper is now recycled. This means more recycled fibres are being used as a raw material by Europe’s paper producers.
Myth 3: Print and Paper is a wasteful product
Paper is one of the most recycled products in the world.
The European recycling rate for paper is 72% – that amounts to 2 tonnes of paper being recycled every second!
The European paper industry is a leading recycler and, with local collecting systems improving, will increase its recycling rates even further.
You can find out more about our commitment to sustainability, and more about the Two Sides campaign here.
If you’d like to chat more about how we can help your business embrace the power of print, in the most sustainable way possible then please get in contact with me on 01726 624900.