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5 Ways to Use Instead of Discard Paper

Updated on May 5, 2011

Top 5

Everyday you walk down to your mailbox and grab a handful of mostly junk mail that you are most likely going to throw away within five minutes. Or your kids bring home their school work which is obviously needed and interesting for now, but after the semester no longer has a use. Not to mention all the paper from work, clubs, kids activities, etc. Obviously the best option is to recycle all this paper but there is two main reason why recycling can be troublesome. One, some of it is bills that contains your name, address, and sensitive financial information which you don't want to just pop in the recycling bin for your garbage man to peruse. Two, you might be able to put this paper to good use replacing paper you were going to buy, and then still recycle it. That means you are recycling and reusing at the same time. Now that's good Karma :)

Here are my top 5 things you can do with this paper so that it doesn't find a landfill:

  1. If you have young children then you are always looking for fun art projects to do on rainy days. This paper that was going to be thrown away can be a great thing for you kids to use for their art. You can either just have them randomly scribble on it (depending on their age), make paper airplanes, or I've even heard of parents that take the time to let their kids rip up the paper, moisten, and dry to make NEW PAPER! How cool is that?!
  2. How many times have you printed something that you realized wasn't what you wanted once you see it on the sheet and not on the screen? Sometimes I'll print a document 3 or more times before I get it just right. I keep a stack of this paper that I periodically will cut into fours to use at note pages at my desk. Then when someone calls and I need something to write a phone number on I'm ready. No more paying for sticky notes!
  3. My family likes to camp and that usually means a fire each night (because marshmellos don't just roast themselves :). When we are packing up to do I'll usually grab a small box of the bills that I didn't use for anything else because they have my sensitive financial information printed. Then when it comes time to start the fire each night I'll use this paper up. It's not exactly being recycled but I was going to use something to get the fire going so why not protect my identity at the same time?
  4. Another great thing to do with your leftover paper is to start a worm bin. This is a great way to create fertile compost for you garden using a bin of worms that will eat your organic dinner left overs. To start worm composting you will need to fill that bin with some bedding to get started and that's where you paper comes in. You garden will thank you and you'll be putting that paper back to use as well.
  5. The last use for your leftover paper is for packing when you are shipping something breakable. I'll keep newspaper and old papers (without and sensitive information printed) around for when I need to ship something. Instead of using packing peanuts and other environmentally unfriendly items, why not just rip up a bunch of paper that you need to get rid of anyway? Crumple it up and tuck it around you breakable items to be shipped and you'll be taking care of the environment at the same time.


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    • profile image

      greenguy 6 years ago

      hey- what a great article! I am always looking for more ways to be green! Item #3 is my favorite. How can you go wrong when you're burning your bills? :)

    • Mctwitchin profile image

      Mctwitchin 6 years ago

      Good job!