Steps to Reducing Mail

Reduce Mail and Cut Your Paper Consumption

Whether you have the broadleaf newsprint habit or enjoy skimming your fingers across the glossy pages of a magazine, your addiction to reading paper copies of your favorite publications and bills is hampering the planet. 

  • Newspapers account for 6.4 million tons of paper products used in the US every year.[1]
  • Over 350 million magazines are printed annually for American readers.[2]
  • Reading electronically reduces your greenhouse gas emissions by several orders of magnitude compared to reading paper copies.[3]

 

Steps to reduce mail 

Good news is that there are many ways to reduce your incoming mail in order to cut your consumption of forestry products. These methods for stopping postal mail will keep your inbox a little less cluttered and protect fragile ecosystems in the process:

  • Practice no-print methods: Whether you’re at work or at home, choose not to print communications coming to your inbox or documents you need to review. Instead, read them on the computer monitor, download them to your PDA, or get an e-reader. If you need to edit documents, use your software’s built-in editorial tools to do so rather than pen and paper.
  • Receive bills electronically: Ask your bank, credit card companies, charities you support, and other organizations that send you regular statements to send them electronically instead. They’ll appreciate the postage savings and you can store the documents on your computer for future reference.
  • Opt for electronic subscriptions: If you’re a newspaper reader or love your regular magazines, go for the e-versions for paperless reading. Most newspapers now have online versions, as so some magazines. These can also be read on the go by using an e-reader or PDA, making it possible to catch up on your reading while out and about.
  • Store electronic copies: If you need to store official documents or reference materials for future reading, choose electronic instead of file storage. Not only does a hard drive take up less physical space than a filing cabinet, it also can be easily searched when you need to find something.

If you want to further reduce the amount of mail you receive then check out our Stop Junk Mail article. 






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References

1  Economic Profile and Trends - Forest Products. (n.d.). Retrieved June 28, 2010, from Energy Information Administration: http://www.eia.doe.gov/emeu/mecs/iab98/forest/an_prod.html

2 (Economic Profile and Trends - Forest Products)

3  Pescovitz, D. (n.d.). Wireless Ways to Go Green. Retrieved June 28, 2010, from Lab Note - University of California Berkeley: http://coe.berkeley.edu/labnotes/0904/horvath.html

 

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