Recycling of Paper


Production of goods requires resources. The recycling process of resources directly or indirectly contributes to the resource demand for producing new goods. Production of goods can be beneficial by using fewer resources while they are recycled in proper ways. Paper is one of the most used things in today’s world thus paper recycling is necessary. Used paper can be reused in different forms and by recycling, a constant supply of paper is possible.

What is Recycling of Paper?

In the waste paper recycling process, used papers are mixed with chemicals or water and broken down. With some additional steps, newspapers are produced. Recycled paper has taken up 50% of the present usage of paper by humans. Paper is one of the major solid waste components that make up half of the landfill garbage. Although the involvement of digital products is increasing with technological improvement, the demand for paper is very high and recycling paper is essential to save the environment.

Paper Recycling Process

Paper demand is not going to decrease and hence, paper recycling is very important. Many paper recycling plants have been established all over the world for human needs. These plants can convert waste paper into usable products. The paper recycling process is done in some steps described below.

Figure 1: Process of paper recycling

  • The paper from garbage and recycling bins is shifted to recycling centers where the trash removal process occurs. Glasses, waste papers, plastics, and other contaminants are removed in such places.

  • The waste paper segregation is done with different grades after the contaminant removal.

  • After the sorting process, these are stored in bales before moving to the mills for further processing.

  • These papers are parted into millions of small parts at mills. Water and chemical substances are mixed with them and heated. Fibers are formed by breaking down the pairing pieces.

  • Adhesives and other contaminants are removed by pressing the entire mixture through screens.

  • A cone-shaped cylinder is used to spin the papers to clean any presence of ink.

  • The conveyor receives the pulp. In the conveyor, water dripping occurs on the belt for bonding the paper fibers.

  • Then with the use of heated metal rollers, the drying process of paper fibers is done.

  • Finally, these papers are placed on large rolls for producing new papers.

Figure 2: Various Steps Involved in Paper Waste Recycling

Paper recycling works as treat for nature for saving energy and resources. Forest, water, and trees are core natural resources, and using them for paper creation on regular basis can disrupt the environmental balance. The recycling process mentioned above is used in most paper mills to reduce the heavy usage of natural resources. The paper recycling process help prevent pollution in land, water, and air. Harmful gasses like methane produced in the landfills are not recyclable thus; paper recycling helps in preventing environmental pollution. The paper recycling process can decompress biodegradable wastes and hazardous wastes indirectly.

Importance of Paper Recycling

The increasing uses of papers in different industries affect the environmental influences and it can offer benefits via the process of recycling their wastes. Around 12.5 million tonnes of paper gets recycled in the UK as a yearly process that benefits the environment. The followings are the positive notes on process of recycling paper in the present environment −

  • The process of recycling paper enables decreasing the emissions rate of the greenhouse gas that can contribute to positive changes in the atmosphere.

  • The manufacturing process of paper requires performing a large amount of deforestation that harms the present environment.

  • In paper recycling process, less amount of energy and water is used than manufacturing it.

Benefits of Recycled Paper

The paper recycling method is useful for preserving trees and keeping the natural resources available on Earth. Paper recycling is regarded as a cost-effective procedure that benefits industries connected to the process and the end users also. Effective techniques help to reduce costs and keep more trees across the globe. The development of a clean environment for the future is possible by recycling paper. The followings are the common benefits of recycled paper −

  • The use of recycling paper showcases the commitment to developing the environment.

  • The recycling of paper indicates the process that utilises less wood, oxygen, and water.

  • The recycling process of papers indicates less waste delivering better landfall space.

Figure 3: Usefulness of recycling paper

Paper Recycling Limitations

With several benefits, there are also some challenges in recycling papers. Not every type of paper can be recycled, like tissue paper. The procedure of recycling paper needs more time than manufacturing it. The procedure to recycle paper requires more staff to collect the used papers from garbage deinking and remanufacturing the papers. Sometimes, the cost gets higher to recycle papers.


The process of recycling paper benefits the environment, households, and industries that are using recycled paper. The procedure of recycling paper ensures that the environment remains protected as deforestation will stop. Due to less use of resources, recycled papers have significance. The process takes more time and sometimes creates limitation although it's useful to save natural resources and decrease the number of waste.


Q1. What kinds of paper can be recycled?

Ans. Most kinds of papers that are used in regular life can be recycled. Such as papers that are used in academic use like books, computer paper, and also papers that are used in the catalogues, journals, newspapers, cardboard, and others. But tissue paper cannot be recycled.

Q2. Is the process of paper recycling beneficial for the environment?

Ans. The process of recycling paper uses fewer amounts of resources such as wood, electricity, water, and others. It results in less amount of greenhouse gases emitted through the process. Hence, it’s beneficial for the environment.

Q3. Is the application of recycling paper eco-friendly?

Ans. Paper is recycled by using renewable resources and it can be biodegradable also.

Updated on: 13-Apr-2023


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