The Paper Process

How Paper is Recycled?

  • Step 1: After you put paper in your recycling bin, it's taken by Planet Waste Paper where contaminants are removed.

  • Step 2: Next, the paper is sorted into different grades.

  • Step 3: Once paper is sorted, it will be stored in bales until a mill needs it, and then it will be transferred to the mill for processing.

  • Step 4: Once at the mill large machines (pulpers) shred the paper into small pieces. This mixture of paper, water, and chemicals is heated and the pieces of paper break down into fibers.

  • Step 5: The mixture is pressed through a screen to remove adhesives and other remaining contaminants.

  • Step 6: Next, the paper will be spun in a cone-shaped cylinder to clean it, and sometimes ink will also be removed. At this point, the pulp is sent through a machine that sprays it onto a conveyor belt. Water will drip through the belt's screen, and the paper fibers will start bonding together.

  • Step 7: Heated metal rollers will dry the paper, and the paper will be put onto large rolls, which can be made into new paper products.

A Lesson on Waste

The earth is a ‘closed system' – nothing disappears. In nature, the cycle of life operates in a circular system and waste generated by one organism becomes food for another. Fallen leaves decay and the nutrients are returned to the earth, to become food again for the tree. An exciting challenge facing city communities is to begin to imagine life without waste, where everything that is thrown away at the end of one life becomes the technical or organic nutrient for another life.