Recycled Paper is a Good Start, But This is Even Better

These days it seems everybody has some sort of recycled/eco friendly paper offering. So what’s the big deal about a Swedish offering making its US debut on Earth Day this year?

White Lines Carbon Neutral Swedish Paper

White Lines factory reuses their carbon emissions in a closed loop, making for zero CO2 emissions, for one. Then they offset what they can’t reuse (transportation, etc) via planting trees in Africa, as coordinated by environmental consultancy U&W (interestingly pronounced “You & We” in Swedish) The wood used for the paper comes from locally sourced, sustainably managed forests, and woodchip waste from sawmills. And every package tells you the precise carbon footprint, the materials traced back to the source.

And then it gets interesting.

The paper uses white lines rather then black or blue. And? And that means less visual competition between pen/pencil strokes on the line. This does two things: When copying or faxing, the white lines disappear, so you can draw using grid paper as a guide, then when others see it, all there is is your drawing. For those learning to write, the focus is squarely on the writing, without the distraction of other lines.

For those that want to be thorough in their commitment to sustainable choices as a business, this would seem to be an excellent choice. Going paperless is an admirable goal, but as it stands, there’s still a need for paper use. Why not do it with paper of this caliber?

Update: I’ve now been told it’s available domestically in the US today, through Amazon. Official launch is Earth Day, but they’re quietly available now. I’m getting some myself, actually.

Readers:  What other everyday things in your work do you see value in changing, and what are you doing/using to change it? Comment below please.

About the Author

Paul Smith is a sustainable business innovator, the founder of GreenSmith Consulting, and has an MBA in Sustainable Management from Presidio School of Management in San Francisco. He creates interest in, conversations around, and business for green (and greening) companies, via social media. Who he has and wants to work with includes consumer, media, clean tech, NGOs, social ventures, and museums. For more on GreenSmith Consulting, see He also writes for Triple Pundit
  • Sam

    Not sure how green it is to ship paper from Sweden and then have UPS make a delivery for 160 pages.

  • Owl

    I think the key is locally sourced wood products in this case. So much of what is recycled now has an enormous carbon footprint as the bulk recycled materials are shipped overseas only to be shipped back as finished products. In the end the carbon footprint can end up being much greater than virgin product.

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  • Good point Sam. Buying anything in small quantities to be shipped to you isn’t the best way to go. They will be coming from within the US, since White Lines now has a US distributor, so it’s not quite the impact that could have been, straight from Sweden.

    Owl, you hit it on the nail. Just because something has an ecologically positive attribute in one aspect does not make it sustainable. It’s important to consider the overall impact that each product design decision makes.

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  • Michael

    Actually, shipping in containers on boats has a very low emissions level and also low carbon footprint addition. If the demand and volume for the Whitelines products becomes large enough, they will be able to maintain their neutral carbon footprint certification quite easily.

    I’ve been using the products for almost two years. This will be huge over here in the States. People who use it, love it.

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