Sustainable shredding, responsible recycling

Young green plant in stack of scrap paper from paper cutter

Copyright: Phanuwat Nandee/123rf

Once you put that piece of paper into a bin to be shredded, do you know what happens to it? Do you think it gets recycled, do you think it ends up in a landfill, or do you think it goes to an incinerator? It’s likely you’ve never thought about it, but here’s why it matters. Not all shredding processes are created equal. The process varies by individual hauler, city and occasionally by county. Shredding is often kept separate from recycling services, and your shredded paper isn’t guaranteed to be recycled.

Before you use your personal shredder to destroy documents, and put that material in your recycling bin, you’ll want to check and see if your city accepts it. If your city doesn’t accept it, your shredded paper is likely not being recycled, rather, going to the landfill with the rest of your garbage.  However, Minneapolis, St. Paul and Eden Prairie allow shredded paper to be recycled if it’s sealed in a paper bag.

If you’re using a professional document destruction company, it’s more likely that your shredded material is being recycled, but that’s not always the case. If you or your company didn’t ask your information destruction company what they do with shredded paper after it’s broken down, you’re not alone. However, if knowing what happens to your material is important to you, you may want to ask the question if you’re considering using an information destruction partner for the first time or switching providers.

Did you know? According to Stanford University, “one ton of recycled office paper saves 4,100 Kwh [kilowatt hours] of energy, 9 barrels of oil, 54 million BTU’s [British thermal unit] of energy, 60 pounds of air pollutants from being released, 7,000 gallons of water, and 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space?” Imagine how much energy is lost when one ton of paper isn’t just because it was shredded.

At Shred Right and Rohn Industries, being a good steward of the environment is important to us, and is reflected in our commitment to following our zero-landfill policies to ensure that we’re reducing our footprint, and helping our consumers and clients minimize theirs.

Did you know that you can drop off your materials to have them shredded at our St. Paul location, even if it’s just a grocery bag or two filled with old bank statements from your home? You don’t have to be an office or corporation to use our services. Otherwise, if you don’t want to bring your items to our headquarters in St. Paul, you can always stop by one of our shredding events around Minnesota. Click here to see our schedule.

If you want to know even more about how our process works to keep your data and information safe while protecting our environment, contact us today for more information on our services or our zero-landfill policies.