Are Notebooks Recyclable?
Most notebooks are recyclable. Whether you can recycle your notebook will depend on which materials it is made of. For example, you will need to pay attention to the binding. Is it wire bound, or stitched? Also, whether your notepad is comprised of paper, cardboard, metal, or plastic, there are different ways to recycle each one.
Sometimes it can be difficult to know what you can and cannot recycle as it is not always made clear. To find out what you can recycle, check for any packaging symbols on your notebook which will tell you whether the item can be recycled and how. Products that don’t show symbols often state recycling details using information sheets on either the front or back page.
Recycling can differ between local authorities and what you can recycle and how may depend on where you live. You can find out more about what can be recycled in your local authority by visiting Recycle Now.
To start, you will need to separate your notebook into different materials; without this they simply will not be recycled. Notebooks are, most commonly, made of cardboard, metal, or plastic.
The pages of your notebook are typically made from paper. Paper can often be recycled at home, as long as it is not stained with foodstuffs, grease, paint, or dirt. Writing paper can be recycled easily along with magazines, letters, flyers, and newspapers.
The UK uses 12 million tons of paper each year, but recycling it can prevent it from going to landfill, where it produces harmful greenhouse gases. So, by recycling, we can help reduce energy use, and cut CO2 emissions. Paper is recycled into newspaper, cardboard boxes, toilet roll, or back into writing paper.
The front and back cover of your notebook may be made from cardboard. Cardboard is widely recycled with paper, unless it is covered in a plastic film on both sides. Cardboard from notebooks can be recycled at home with other cardboard including cardboard boxes, online delivery boxes, cardboard food packaging, greetings cards, and egg boxes. Cardboard recycled with paper is recycled in the same way at a paper mill to be turned into newspaper, cardboard boxes, and writing paper.
Your notebook may be bound together using twin or single wire spiral binding made from metal. The metal binding can be recycled with other household metals including aerosols, drinks cans, and food tins. Remove the metal spiral wiring so that it does not contaminate the paper recycling and recycle it on its own with metal recycling.
Around 400 million tons of metal are recycled worldwide. Steel is the most recycled material on the planet, and other recycled metals include aluminium, copper, silver, and brass. Recycling metal saves energy and resources and benefits the environment, unlike paper. Interestingly, metals can be recycled many times without altering their properties. They can be re-purposed into anything, from bicycle frames to train tracks or paperclips!
Your notebook may contain plastic in its spiral binding or in its covers. If this is the case, remove the binding and covers from the paper and recycle separately to avoid contaminating the paper recycling.
Whether you can recycle the plastic components of your notepad will depend on what type of plastic it is made from. Polyethylene Terephthalate (PET), High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE), and Polypropylene (PP) are easily recyclable at home, whereas Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is recyclable at specialist points.
As a nation, we use 20x more plastic than we did 50 years ago. To conserve non-renewable fossil fuels, reduce energy, reduce landfill waste, and harmful emissions, we need to reuse and recycle more of the plastic and stationery we use.
Plastic is recycled by first being sorted into polymer type. Then it is shredded, washed, melted, and pelletised before being made into new products.
Fully Recycled and Recyclable Notebooks
Our new range of Recycled and Recyclable notebooks, ‘nu evolve’ not only uses recycled and responsibly sourced materials in manufacturing but they’re also all easily recyclable after use. Details of how all the components can be recycled are detailed on an information sheet at the front of the book.
Our spiral-bound wiro notebooks use fully recycled FSC-certified paper and cardboard and are printed using vegetable ink so can be recycled with household paper and cardboard. The spiral wire used to bind the notebooks is not coated in any plastic like most other metal wiro products on offer, so can be separated from the paper notepad and recycled with other metals.
Our stitched notebooks also use recycled FSC-certified paper with a cardboard cover and are printed using vegetable ink. The notebook is bound using cotton made from natural fibre. These notebooks can be fully recycled with paper recycling after use.
Our refill pad uses recycled FSC-certified paper with a cardboard cover. It is bound with a paper tape binding and uses vegan-friendly glue. This means it can be recycled with paper recycling after use.
Get in touch with us today for more recycling tips, and information on our nu evolve range, or our newly created nu stone stone paper range, which is made without using any trees at all!