Paper Recycling In Nigeria: Turn Paper to Cash

Paper Recycling: Turn Paper to Cash

In the quest for a sustainable and eco-friendly future, recycling has emerged as a powerful solution to reduce waste and conserve valuable resources. Among the myriad of materials that can be recycled, paper stands out as one of the most significant contenders. Like many other countries, Nigerians can reap numerous benefits from recycling paper, especially with the abundance of used exercise books, jotters, POS receipts, bank receipts, lotto receipts, posters, flyers, and print papers that can be recycled. In this article, we will explore how Nigerians can start recycling paper, the market for recycling paper, the types of paper that can be recycled, and the process of recycling paper.

How Do I Start Recycling Paper?

This article probably makes you think back to all the exercise books you have torn, burnt or given out to street food vendors from primary school till date. Recycling paper is very easy; all you have to do is follow the steps below:

Collect: Gather used exercise books, jotters, POS receipts, bank receipts, lotto receipts, posters, flyers, and print papers from your household, office or school. 

Segregate: Segregate the papers from other waste materials to ensure that only clean and uncontaminated paper is sent for recycling.

Sort: It is important to sort papers into different categories based on their type. For instance, flyers, posters, magazines, soap or drug paper packaging are categorized as print paper, while A4 papers, notebooks, textbooks, tickets, and POS receipts are categorized as white paper. Bank tellers, on the other hand, are considered coloured paper. Understanding the difference between these papers and sorting them accordingly is crucial as they hold different values.

Contact Recycling Companies: Contact local recycling organizations or waste management companies that specialize in paper recycling. Inquire about available services, drop-off locations, and pick-up schedules.

Educate Others: Raise awareness about paper recycling in your community. Encourage family members, friends, colleagues, and neighbors to participate in the recycling effort. The more people involved, the greater the impact on the environment and greater the rewards.

Is There a Market for Recycling Paper in Nigeria?

Yes, there is a thriving market for recycling paper in Nigeria. The demand for recycled paper is rising due to its environmental benefits and cost-effectiveness. Many industries, such as packaging, printing, and manufacturing, rely on recycled paper as a raw material to produce various products. By recycling paper, Nigerians can tap into this market and generate income.

Furthermore, recycling paper helps to conserve forests, as fewer trees need to be cut down for fresh paper production. It also reduces the energy and water consumption associated with paper manufacturing, making it an economically and environmentally sensible choice.

What Kind of Paper Can Be Recycled?

A wide variety of paper products can be recycled, including:

  • Exercise Books and Jotters: Exercise books and jotters are made from paper and can be recycled to produce new paper products.
  • Receipts: Whether it’s POS receipts, bank receipts, betting slips, or other similar documents, these papers can all be recycled.
  • Print Papers: Office papers, magazines, posters, flyers, and other print materials can all be recycled.
  • Coloured paper: Bank tellers issued after bank transactions can also be recycled.

How is Paper Recycled?

The process of recycling paper involves several steps:

Collection: Collected paper is taken to recycling centres and sorted based on type and quality.

Pulping: The sorted paper is then mixed with water and chemicals to create a pulp. This process breaks down the paper fibres into a slurry.

Screening and Cleaning: The pulp is screened to remove any remaining contaminants like ink, glue, or staples. It is then cleaned to achieve a smooth and consistent texture.

De-inking: For certain types of paper, like print papers, an additional de-inking process is performed to remove ink and produce bright white recycled paper.

Pressing and Drying: The cleaned pulp is pressed to remove excess water and then dried to produce sheets of recycled paper.

Finishing: The recycled paper is then trimmed, rolled, and cut into various sizes, ready to be used for new products.

Recycling paper can be a significant means for Nigerians to contribute to environmental conservation and earn some income. By supporting local industries through paper recycling, we can foster a greener and more sustainable future not just for Nigeria, but for the entire planet. Therefore, let us join hands, recycle paper, and turn waste into a valuable resource.

Read: Classification of recyclable materials

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