If you are both safety and environmentally conscious, you will want to shred private files and then recycle them. This keeps your information secure while also eliminating waste. Unfortunately, however, paper shreds that are placed in the recycling bin at home are not actually recycled.
Why Can’t Shreds Be Recycled?
Shreds that have been recycled at home or the office can often lead to the landfill because the size and the quantity of the shreds are too small. It becomes difficult to separate throughout the recycling process, so these shreds are often thrown away.
Most recycling centers don’t accept small strips or bits of paper. Large-scale recycling facilities use massive screens to dry pulped paper on. Small paper bits don’t stick well and can fall through the screens.
This creates a difficult conundrum for those who want to keep their private information secure while reducing their impact on the environment, but there is a solution.
What Happens When I Recycle Paper Shreds?
If you put paper shreds in a recycle bin, they will most likely end up in a landfill. Everything placed in recycle bins is sifted through and separated out into plastics, papers, metals, and items that can’t be recycled—including paper shreds.
Materials roll along large belts and paper shreds easily fall off into piles of non-recyclable items. Some, but not all, recycling facilities accept paper shreds. However, if they are not properly bagged, they are picked off by workers looking for non-recyclables.
How Can I Recycle Shredded Paper?
While recycling centers typically don’t take a few sheets worth of shredded paper from individuals, large scale shredding operations produce large bales of shredded paper that recycling facilities can manage.
When you use a professional shredding service, your shreds will be recycled.
There might be a misconception that shredding services are only for large scale shredding projects, but if you just have a few sheets to shred you can safely drop them off at thousands of locations throughout the U.S. for around $1 per pound of paper (on average).
If you have large of amounts of paper to shred on a regular basis, there are shredding options that allow you to pay a fee and have as much paper as you want picked up and shredded at an off site facility on a regular basis.
Find a Shredding Solution That Allows You to Recycle the Shreds
Shred Nations partners with shredding professionals around the country. We’re here to help you find the solution that best meets your needs. Whether you prioritize speed, security, cost, or environmental concerns, we will help you find the best shredding service in your area.
Give us a call us at (800) 747-3365, fill out the form, or contact us directly using our live chat for free quotes on environmentally-friendly shredding services near you.