20 Jul 2011 Save Water – Use Globe Guard® 100% PCW Recycled Content Boxes
As most of the country suffers through a record heat wave, droughts are becoming more common worldwide, including here in the USA. Those trends make it an excellent time to remind people about the environmental benefits of using shipping boxes made of recycled corrugated.
Water Shortage Is for Real
I admit we are a little spoiled in the Midwest, especially here in the Chicago area where we take beautiful Lake Michigan for granted as an ample source of drinking water and a summertime water park. In many other parts of the country, long before this current heat wave, water has been consistently in short supply, in some cases for several years. In other words, for some this is not a new problem and they have been dealing with water conservation efforts for some time.
The problem is not just in the dry southwest or in agricultural areas; it is even impacting our largest American cities. A report last year identified cities literally running out of water, and the list included Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Atlanta, Orlando, Phoenix and several cities in Texas.
How 100% Recycled Content Boxes Can Help
Contrary to a popular misconception, there is no shortage of trees. Nationally, we now plant more trees annually than we harvest, so use of paper products is not really a contributing issue. Paper, even in corrugated form, remains one of the truest “renewable resources” we have. The problem is the very water-intensive pulping process in which trees are converted into pulp that will eventually be turned into paper and ultimately are manufactured into corrugated board and shipping boxes.
By common industry estimates, making a ton of corrugated board from virgin pulp requires more than 24,000 gallons of water. Depending on whom you talk to, manufacturing a ton of corrugated board from recycled rather than virgin pulp reduces the water required by a minimum of 25% to as much as 40%.
Other Benefits of Using 100% Recycled Corrugated Board
As important as water is now, and it’s certain to become even more precious in the near future, reduced water usage is just one eco advantage of using recycled corrugated whenever possible. The manufacturing of recycled corrugated board also uses substantially less energy and greatly reduces the volume of C02 emissions.
The other often overlooked benefit of recycled board is that while everyone believes in the necessity and value of recycling, very few seem to understand why we have to create a use for that recycled content, whether it is paper, corrugated board or even plastic waste. The life cycle only works if we find a new way to utilize the waste we are diverting from our local landfill.
The environment is a complicated issue with no single correct answer or solution. But on a hot day like today, we all quickly learn to appreciate the incredible gift of a single glass of cold, clean water.