Now, when the whole world is in the promotion of environmental protection, paper product industry has still been a serious waste of resources issues. To plant a tree for paper producing need in the forestry area takes about 20-40 years. Accounting to the statistics, producing ofone ton of paper need to use more than 20 trees, needs to consume 100 tons of water, 600 kWh of electricity, 1.2 tons of coal and 300 kg chemical raw materials, at the same time, producing high concentrations of 300tons of sewage. Even the paper recycling process is enabled, most waste paper are going through the process of recycling, This cyclic process isseemingly saving resources, but in fact, from waste paper into pulp, then from pulp to the recycled paper and finally change the recycled paper to paper we actually can be use, afterall this complex process, the basic cost are exceeds the value of its own. The cost of recycle paper is more than to produce a new paper. In fact, when we start to notice some small things in the daily life, we could reduce the use of paper, and reduce deforestation indirectly, because some small things have brought unexpected waste of resources.
When we talking about paper waste, we always pay attention to cultural and scholastic paper waste, while ignore consumer paper waste. Also when people mention consumer paper waste, one might think of the waste of paper bags. However, the receipt has more terrible waste which people didn’t notice. Almost all consumers will beusing receipt, such as shopping in supermarket or shops, do the post office payment, or even take a taxi, or eating in restaurants. People caused a huge waste at inadvertently, receipt waste doesn’t seem to be a waste and make most people pay attention on it.
Standing in front of many supermarkets, people finish off the payment and get ready to go. At this time, the machine will spit out a long checkout receipt. Most customers throw the recipe into the shopping bags or rubbish bins directly without any mentions.They do not even look at it once. Curiously, even the machine prompt people every times “print out receipt or not”,people will always choose “YES”, but throw away and don’t look at it. That description people just need to retain a sense of security on their consumption, and they don’t really care what is written on the receipt. This behavior has become a habit in most people’s mind, especially happened in the small amount consumption. Melbourne has a population of almost 4.25 million. Assume that one million people are going to the supermarket every day, and 8 hundred thousand people want print out receipt. Whether how many things they bought, checkout machines will still spit out 8 hundred thousand receipts, this is a very frightening number, wasted 8 hundred thousand papers a day.
Australia isn’t a large population country. Some populous countries may waste 1 hundred million receipts in one day. For example, in China not only will waste countless supermarkets receipt, each taxi will be a waste of 40 receipts in one day,that‘s wasting 14.6 thousand receipts in one year. Press each receipt purchase price of 0.05 yuan (RMB), 730 yuan a year wasted. Hangzhou(capital city of Zhejiang Province, China) had more than 7 thousand taxis, if only count by 7 thousand, the annual waste of 1.022 billion receipts is 5.11 million yuan.A taxi receipt about 12 cm, that’s 12,264 kilometers paper of receipt are wasted in one year. After 3 years, the wasted paper can be around the earth. This is just a small city in China, there are 30 more capital cities in China, and haven’t including other cities. So, that would be caused by the waste beyond imagination. Even some supermarkets receipt waste is more exaggerated,such as well-known Metro AG supermarket is actually made of A3 paper size receipt. Even if you only bought one thing, they will give you a sheet of A3 size paper receipt, although that can leave a deep impression of the brand, but also caused serious waste issue.
So,if people are no longer using the receipts, how much paper can be saved? How many trees will not be felled?
First thing we can do is to reject the receipt. When payment is done, if the receipt is really not necessary, you should remind yourself in subconscious that you don’t need, thus changing the habit of always print out the receipt. People can give themselves a limit, under how much money, I don’t need receipt? For example, during some small amount consumption, such as shopping in supermarket or pay the restaurant bill. Say “No” to receipt.
Secondly, we should change the paper receipts to electronic receipts to reducing the waste of paper resources, and implement sustainable development policies. When people are buying something they can enter their own phone numbers, receipt will be downloaded directly in the phone, or enter their email address so that receipt will sent directly to their e-mail box. Such as people suffering with waste plastic bags issue before, the government introduced a policy which is charged the money if consumer want a plastic bag when they finish shopping.That policy comes good limiting the number of people who are using plastic bags, and promote resource savings. Similarly, the receipt can be issued the same policy. Receipt will be charges! After every purchase, if you want your receipt as a print out version, you need to pay an extra penny. Ifyou want the electronic version, it will not be charged. Over time, the budget-conscious people will definitely save this unnecessary overhead, theywill use the electronic receipt, the electronic version in order to effectively eliminate waste.
In the conclusion, I want to say the small receipt brought a huge terrible waste of paper resources. People need to change their attitude to do a rational choice on need a receipt or not. However, the best way to change people’s attitude is propaganda receipt paper resulting waste of resources, increasing people’s environmental awareness.