Usage of Paper- Curse for our Environment






A Paper can be termed as a thin sheet   material which is produced out of wood, rags, grass or other vegetable sources in water, followed by draining the water. Although paper was originally made in single sheets by hand, almost all of it now is made up in large machines. It is a versatile material with many uses, including printing, packaging, decorating, writing, cleaning, filter paper, wallpaper, book end-paper, conversation paper, laminated workshops and much more. The paper was first made in China in ancient early history.

Take a moment and have a look around your surrounding you’ll notice various kinds of paper. Paper is something which is heavily used in our everyday lives. It is used for storing various information, printing newspaper and magazines, keeping a record of various transactions etc. Students use books and notebooks to study along with some extra notes. Every year billion books, magazines and newspapers are published daily. Majorly cutting of timber is done and is used for production of paper. Due to this Pulpwood plantations and mills endanger natural habitats. Millions of acres of forest are destroyed annually due to paper. Also, the pulp and paper industry is partly blamed for the endangerment of some species that live in the forest. An A4 paper requires 10 litres of water per sheet. When paper rots, methane is emitted a greenhouse gas, when it is burned or composted, carbon dioxide. Chopping down trees decreases the amount of oxygen in the ecosystem, thus adversely affecting all other life-forms.

Paper is never blamed on its own for climatic changes or global warming but paper affects the globe at every stage of its production. Paper is in fact the third or fourth largest source of industrial greenhouse gas emissions in most of the developed countries. Even though paper is recyclable it makes up almost 25% of the landfills and emits methane. Although paper comes from well-managed forests, many of the trees for paper industries come from illegal tree logger who destroys forests without any concerns.

Trees are being cut down at an alarming rate. The speed at which deforestation is taking place, we will soon face a major problem of losing out trees globally. This results in increase of global warming and create an imbalance in the ecosystem. Looking at the global situation, there are many companies and industries which are trying to reduce the usage of paper. We all have to look for sustainable alternatives at the company, industries and personal level. We all know paper is recyclable but not everyone recycles it. Making paper from recycled materials are the basic solutions to saving trees and preserving the environment. It consumes lesser energy to produce paper from recycled materials and post-consumer waste than to make paper from scratch, using virgin materials. Try turning to be completely paperless. Earlier companies would print without any consideration of the amount of paper that gets wasted. Now that people are getting more eco-friendly they usually forward, share or use digital documents.
Print only important documents and avoid printing emails or small briefs that are eventually going to be shredded.

Thus, Electronic media and advanced technology is a new ray of hope in the 21st Century to save trees and to reduce the usage of paper. If we can go paperless with our currencies, we can easily go paperless with everything in our day to day lives.           

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