Although in general, paper usage is going down, it is still the main driver of forest destruction. To my surprise, globally, paper consumption is rising. Did you know that North Americans consume more paper per capita (around 500lbs) than anyone else on earth? There is more to all of this including how more energy is wasted at manufacturing plants, and the the huge amount of greenhouse gases being released. To see the rest of the paper facts click here.
Why Go Paperless?
With all of the available resources and technology, why is so much paper being used and wasted? As I was researching going paperless (businesses, individuals, and classrooms), I was encouraged to find a 1st grade teacher whose mission was to go paperless. You can read the story here. She explained that although going paperless is not all lovely, the benefits are worth it. Here are some more reasons to go paperless:
Businesses, individuals, and schools can all save money by going paperless. Think about ink cartridges, paper cost, maintenance cost, and pens/pencils. Many schools spend over $20k with fees associated with the copier alone (see this post for details).
Have you ever lost notes from a business meeting? How many full notebooks of staff meeting do you have? What if you could pull up all your notes from all the meetings you have ever been to? Going paperless, and using something like Evernote to streamline your meetings among other things is a great place to start.
Doesn’t it just feel good to help our earth? Think about being able to tell someone you are 100% paperless. It is a good feeling!
In the Paperless Classroom Project, the teacher says “I even heard a few say it was fun not to do any work! It’s amazing how work feels like play when you are using technology.” Students are naturally motivated when they are using technology. It is a bonus because they are learning!
Do you have important files that need to be locked up? Having all of those online in a secure account will keep them safe, and you will not have to worry about locking or hiding important papers.
I have friends and coworkers asking me to share resources all the time. With online storage like Google Docs, it makes it very easy to share documents and resources.
Start Going Paperless today
Going paperless can be overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. Start with ONE way to going paperless. Something that will be beneficial to you now, and perhaps others in the future. Start organizing all of your notes through Evernote. When you are comfortable with that, show it to your students, coworkers or family. Then move on to the next way to go paperless. Of course we are here to help you go paperless as well!