How to Justify Recycling Efforts for Cardboard and Shipping Boxes

Unlike papermaking, the idea of separate collection of used paper dates back a lot shorter in time. Abundant periodicals, many materials used in schools and various trainings, thousands of flyers, food and garment packaging, multiple copies of documents in banks, administration etc. and even the annual write-off of books from libraries for various reasons. All these build up an orderly system for collection of waste paper and justify recycling efforts in order to avoid leaving a thick paper trail in landfills.

Educational work with children and students is especially rewarding in that respect. Initiatives for paper collection and recycling can be easily announced by notifying students in advance with posters, school newsletters or even in classes. Various incentives can be created to encourage participation. A campaign would be successful if it provides transportation to the point of collection and recycling. Involvement of volunteers has also shown good results with mini competitions between the teams aimed at collecting more paper and attracting more stakeholders in achieving larger publicity.

Alternatively, schools can have a designated permanent paper collection point. This could require a bit more resources from school managements and headmaster approvals such as finding premises and creating a position for an attendant. Students typically make a number of copies of notes and class materials so having recycling bins handy is imperative. Hoping that students will collect their scratch paper, journals or even scrapbooks and make the extra effort to find a blue paper recycling station, may or may not work. Recycle bins have to be readily available otherwise paper will go in the comingled trash. They should be even more handy for school departments such as their cafeteria or their packaging and shipping counter etc.

An interesting idea is to place paper bins at kindergarten or primary school entrances. As parents bring their child in the morning they can drop off used paper from home and save a trip to the paper recycling place. In addition, some nurseries have great inventions of improvised containers – baskets made of used small and large cardboard boxes with fictitious shapes and names such as “dragon-eating paper” etc. This style of initiatives creates an early mindset which is a prerequisite for a society focused on sustainable cardboard and shipping boxes breakdown, collection and ultimately inexpensive recycling of paper and corrugated fiberboard.