Well, here are my recommendations to cut your paper waste:
1. Migrate to electronic bills. Ask your bank, water and electricity supplier, etc., to send you an electronic copy of your balance/invoice. Yes, I know it will take you an effort and maybe some of your time, but it is worth it! I keep receiving tones of neat letters with my bills, which I never read because I check them online, much earlier. I usually send them straight to the bin without even bothering to open them. So what is the point of these neat letters?
2. Fight the leaflets. Just imagine this - millions, maybe even billions of leaflets are printed every day and distributed to houses, offices, malls, etc. According to the marketing people, about 2-3 % of the leaflets are actually read and some action is taken. This means that 97% of these millions leaflets (tons of paper) are.. well, wasted. Furthermore, leaflets are unwilling by the receiver, pushy and annoying. Obviously, we cannot stop this overnight. But I suggest the following: never pick up a leaflet from a street-giver and put a note on your mailbox at home and in the office with the following sign: SAVE A TREE. NO LEAFLETS IN THIS MAILBOX, PLEASE!
3. Say NO to newspapers. Ok, I wonder every single day: what is the point in reading the news with a day delay from a difficult to fold paper! And what is the point in buying a glossy magazine with articles taken from the internet, where you can actually read them for free? Some people say that it is a habit. Well, I hope twenty years from now no one will have this expensive habit, which costs us tones of paper every day!
4. Say NO to paper wish cards. Yes, it is great to let your loved ones know that you love them, but make it in an environmental and modern way - send them an electronic card, an electronic gift voucher, an MMS or just a smile. It will show much more awareness , believe me!
5. Add the green sign in your e-mail signature. As I mentioned, some people add it because it is trendy. But, hey, if it is a trend, it means it actually DOES some good by spreading the news! So go ahead and add it in your e-mail signature. You can read more about the campaign here and copy the .JPG file below to your e-mail now!
6. Use recycled paper in your office. It is a little bit more expensive, it is not very smooth, it is more difficult to find, but hell - it is worth it. And when you start using it, you do feel like doing good. Also, remember to always use both sides of the sheet and collect the useless paper for recycling.
7. Do the recycling. Just remember that by sending any paper or package to the bin, you are cutting a tree. Make an effort and make a difference. Collect your paper waste and dispose it to the nearest blue bin or drop-off center.
8. When possible, fill in your forms electronically. Nowadays we are forced to fill in all kinds of forms and most of them are online. Although, there are still many paper forms in the offices for older people who do not use the internet, you can at least save time and some paper by filling the form online.
9. Avoid buying products in a cartoon package. Yes, I know it is difficult. Nowadays, only the coke is not yet in a cartoon box. Your favourite milk, your favourite juice, even the wine may come in a cartoon! But in order to stop this, all consumers should prefer glass package, or no package at all.
10. Plant a tree! Old people say that a human life is worth only if you have built a home, brought up a child and planted a tree. It's your turn!