Conservatree suggests that it takes about 6% of a tree to make a ream of paper. That doesn't sound like a lot, but it does add up. Here at the school we use many reams of paper each month.
But why are we still printing anyhow? Is this the best we can do to disseminate information? Wasn't the purpose of the iPad to be a consuming device, eliminating the need for paper?
Yeah, I know you can get into a discussion of the "cost" of electronic devices and maybe we should. But then you have to get into weighing the consequences of both and that could be a very long term project. I guess nothing is easy anymore, is it?
It's interesting, though, when you remove the printing element from an operating system, how much easier things become. Every printer on the planet requires printer driver software to communicate with the device and every printer manufacturer is just a bit different in how they implement their software.
I can tell you one thing, when we eliminated printing for students not only did we help save more trees but teachers got back class time that was lost to the student trek to the printer to retrieve print jobs by seventeen kids all trying to print at once. And, of course, if the first print job didn't go through, they would usually send it again, and again, and again. I can't tell you how many of those print jobs I put right into the recycle bin at the end of class.
I still have a printer in my office but I use it very infrequently. In fact, it is about 5 years old and I'm still on the original toner cartridge that came with the printer when we bought it. If I print 5 documents a month, that's a lot. Many months I don't print anything because I'm sending documents as attachments to emails, posting them to one of many websites I maintain or sharing them via Google Docs or Evernote.
Funny how a device we couldn't live without just a few years ago is now an environmental hog devouring precious resources and is rapidly becoming obsolete!