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Paper vs. Digital Notebooks

Updated: Sep 17, 2020

notebooks, taking notes, homework, studying, working hard, studious, writing notes, college life, college classes,

I have been in college for 5 years, taking from 4 to 6 classes per semester. That is about 50 notebooks... a lot of paper.

I usually got the 5-star, one-subject, college ruled notebooks that have 100 pages. One tree can make about 10,000 lbs of paper. Meaning one tree can make about 10,000 of these notebooks. That doesn't seem too bad, does it?

But, in the U.S., about 70 million notebooks are bought a year (I created this number by doing a lot of math). Let's say on average each book has 100 pages (Although some have more or less), that is about 7,000 trees used to produce only notebooks in the U.S. alone. This number also only includes notebooks that were purchased. I am sure there are plenty that were made but not bought.

Last semester I got one of those fancy computers (An HP Spectre) that can flip into a tablet and comes with a pen. So, I decided to try taking notes online.

In the past, I had always been against typing my notes because I know to retain more information, notes should be handwritten. But, with this fancy computer, I am able to write and save paper.


Let's talk about the pro's and cons of using paper and digital notebooks.

From a sustainable standpoint, I think that going digital is very beneficial to the planet and my wallet. But, I'll let you decided that for yourself.

I LOVE writing and doodling on paper, so going digital does take some getting used to.

There is something special about writing on paper, so if you do decided to buy notebooks, get the ones made from recycled paper with sustainable covers. Also, on eco-friendly notebooks, there is usually a disposal guide to make sure you properly dispose of all parts of the notebook.

Please keep the planet in mind when making all purchasing decisions. Every thing we do can leave a footprint on our Earth.

What we demand is what will be supplied, and often the most sustainable purchases are the one's we didn't buy...

For more information on sustainable products, check out my posts on the ECO Alphabet - a guide to a sustainable lifestyle.



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