Every year nearly 69 percent of the paper is recycled in the world. Paper, when recycled, saves land, forests, trees and the environment. Paper can be easily recycled and also retained. The flexible nature of paper when recycled can be easily used to make several useful products. If you are wondering about old newspaper lying in your home, the good news is that it can be recycled under certain circumstances.

How is paper recycled?

Paper that is discarded in our dust bins and recycling bins are taken to a recycling center. Paper is separated from other forms of junk, like plastic, glass and polythene. The recycled paper will have different grades. Some are high quality and some are already recycled. Based on this they are all segregated into mounds of paper. Usually lower graded papers have already been recycled several times. This includes newspaper.

The quality of the paper is determined by the length of the fiber available. Paper that has been recycled several times will have shorter length of fiber in it. These shorter fibers are mixed with virgin fibers (high quality fibers) to give recycled paper. By using this technique, paper can be recycled for up to seven times.

Procedure of recycling paper

Recycling happens in large bales in the mills. Until large mounds of paper are collected the paper does not actually go into recycling. When the paper is ready to be recycled, it is shredded into small pieces and mixed with some water and chemicals. The mixture is further heated to break down the paper into fibers. During these processes, the ink from the old newspaper is washed out.

The recycled paper is then assembled as sheets and spun into bundles. While rolling them into bundles they are cleaned as well. Then they are dried using cylindrical heaters and conveyor belts. The processed paper is rolled into several bundles and is ready for use afresh. 

Grades of paper that can be recycled

According to the different environmental agencies across the world, there are five grades of paper that can be recycled.

The corrugated containers are papers that are obtained from packaging materials. This type of paper is often found inside cartons as shredded paper.

Mixed paper can contain different varieties of papers like mails, phone books, magazines and paperback books and catalogs.

Newspapers are a category by themselves because they have already been recycled once or twice. This also includes tissues and other recycled products.

Derinked paper is usually considered high grade and these are items like envelopes, print paper and letterheads and so on.

Pulp is a kind of paper which has been discarded by paper mills. This paper is not much of use but that are sometimes used by the packaging industry.

Procedure to collect recyclable paper

When you are planning to recycle old newspaper you need to know how to sort them out while discarding it.

Single stream collection will help you discard recyclables like glass plastic and paper in one container. Single stream recycling options uses less transport, as it can all be put into one container. This helps to reduce emissions as well.

Sorted stream allows you to sort the kinds of paper that can be recycled. You may separate paper from all other kinds of materials. However, you need to check with the local regulations before using this option to recycle old newspaper. There could be certain restrictions, but in all probability you should be able to send your old newspaper to a recycling company collection center without any problems.