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Paper Reduction Strategies

Green Tip of the Month:Think before you print                
Before you click “PRINT,” consider this:

Clarkson purchased 950 cases of 100% virgin copier/printer paper in the 2009-2010 academic year.

How much paper is this? 

  • A stack of this paper would surpass the top of the pinnacle of the Empire State Building by 100 feet.
  • Laid end to end, the sheets could cover a path from Potsdam to Chicago

Another way to look at these numbers - these 24 tons of paper required the annual use of[1]

  • 621 trees
  • ~9 homes worth of energy
  • The equivalent greenhouse gas emissions from 13 cars

Your efforts to cut paper use are helping.  In the last two years, our paper purchases were 14% lower than the previous two years.  A move towards electronic versus announcement has helped to accomplish this.  But we can do more…

Here are a few ways you can continue cut our stack of paper used…

RETHINK your printing needs 

  • Communicate electronically to the extent possible.
  • Explore fax to file, fax forwarding and print to mailbox features on your office copier/printer.
  • Use Moodle or the S:// drive to share documents rather than printing and distributing
  • Consider - If another office has a copy in their files, do you need a paper copy too?

If you must print - REDUCE your paper use

  • Double-side it!  Switch to your area’s network printer and Set your default to print double-sided
    (If you need assistance, please call the HelpDesk (x6700) and they will arrange for a technician to assist you)
  • Reduce your printing margins to 0.75” to get more on each page.
  • Print multiple images per sheet for PowerPoint slides or drafts.

When you do print - make sure it's on RECYCLED paper

  • Paper with 75% recycled content (30% post-consumer) is available through central services. Call the stockroom (x2325) today to order paper with recycled content (stock #02-01-11, $3.50/ream).

Three reasons to act NOW

  1. The virgin timber-based pulp and paper industry is the third greatest industrial emitter of global warming pollution.
  2. The pulp and paper industry is the world's fifth largest industrial consumer of energy and uses more water to produce a ton of product than any other industry.
  3. The U.S. uses 1/3 of the world’s paper, while we account for only 5% of the world’s population.

[1] Environmental impact estimates were made using the Environmental Defense Fund Paper Calculator.
For more information visit

Details from EDF paper calculator

24 tons of 0% recycled content paper

89 tons of wood (621 trees)

717 million BTU energy (~8 homes)

141,171 lbs CO2 equiv. , the equivalent of about 13 cars/year

For 24 tons/y 75% recycled content:

22 tons wood - 155 trees

570 million BTU's  6 homes

96,894 lbs CO2 equiv.  9 cars