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Reduce Waste from Printing

A few numbers:

  • An office worker prints between 6,000 and 10,000 pages a year.

  • With all the paper wasted each year in the US, a 12-foot high wall from Los Angeles to New York City could be built.

How many times have you forgotten to pick up your print job from the printer?

How often the paper you printed ends up in the trash at the end of your work day?

A study from Xerox found that 30% of print jobs are never picked up from the printer. At the end of the work day, 45% of paper printed that day ends up in the trash!

Although a decrease of paper usage was predicted due to the electronic revolution, demand for paper remains high.

Think twice before printing! Let’s reduce waste from printing together!

Did you know?

Paper waste has many environmental impacts, such as:

  1. Deforestation - 93% of paper comes from trees.

  2. Pollution from paper production - among the top 3 of largest industrial polluters of air/water/soil.

  3. Post consumer paper decomposition - paper decomposition emits methane, a greenhouse gas that is around 30 times more potent than CO2.

  4. Energy/water consumption - it requires a lot of water & energy to produce paper.



Today printing is less required than 10 years ago, thanks to online collaborative tools. There is no need to print drafts anymore when you can review, markup or comment documents online in a more effective way.

Print only if really required: make sure the document is ready for printing, print only the portions that you need, choose black and white, draft mode and double sided whenever you can, and never forget to pick up your prints!


In the office, reuse prints when you can, for example to take notes.


Always recycle your prints or shred them if confidential.

Paper products can be recycled around 5-7 times. There are recycling bins and shredders near every printer area, make sure your prints end up there!

To learn more about how paper is recycled: The Paper Recycling Process

Pay attention to the paper you use: recycled paper, paper that came from sustainable managed forests or/and "Process Chlorine Free" material are sustainable options to look for.

And finally, don’t forget to recycle the ink cartridges!

Do you have any idea of how many pages you print per year?

If badge printing is set up in your office, ask your green team to provide a report of the number of pages printed per employee to raise awareness among your colleagues.


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