By Katharine Eaton
What types of papers do people save?
First of all, there are the ones we know we need to hang on to: birth certificates, social security cards, seven years of tax returns, and so on. Important, yes, but that’s about it.
The papers we enjoy keeping are the ones that serve as mementos of our lives, such as greeting cards we’ve received.
Paper greeting cards are available in a multitude of styles for every occasion imaginable – from joyous to sad, and from milestones to “just because,” greeting cards are the perfect vehicle for the sentiment we want to convey.
Whether you buy a card with a message that perfectly captures a moment or the intended recipient’s personality, or take the time to make a card from scratch, greeting cards are a heartfelt way to let someone know that you are thinking of them.
In a survey conducted for the Greeting Card Association, nearly a third of respondents reported that they keep special cards they receive forever. And as this video by Domtar shows, e-cards just don’t cut it for special occasions.
In the event that you do not plan to keep a particular card, remember to recycle it! AF&PA’s sustainability initiative, Better Practices, Better Planet 2020, includes an industry goal to further increase paper recovery for recycling to exceed 70 percent by 2020. Each year since 2011, 63 percent or more of paper used in the U.S. has been recovered for recycling. In 2014 the paper recovery rate exceeded 65 percent.
Some other paper recycling facts include:
- Approximately 80 percent of all U.S. paper mills use some recovered fiber to make everything from paper-based packaging to tissue products to office paper and newspaper.
- Nearly three times more paper is recycled than is sent to landfills.
- By weight, more paper is recovered for recycling from municipal solid waste streams than glass, plastic, steel and aluminum combined, according to U.S. EPA.
Placing a greeting card (and/or the envelope it came in) in the recycling bin helps to make new products. Including new greeting cards!
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