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Washington and Lee University

Washington and Lee University
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Printing/Copying Center


The Printing and Copying Center (PCC) does not have guidelines for the purchase of recyclable content supplies. Their purchases are based on customer desire for “color, texture, and pricing.” Unfortunately the demand lately is for “whiter and cleaner” paper, and such paper is manufactured with relatively more bleach.

Less than 5% of the paper products used are 100% recycled because of “the extra expense in purchasing and the product is dirty causing problems with copiers and press.” The PCC does not use any “tree free” paper. Any unbleached paper they use is colored, so dyes are used in its manufacture.

PCC also provides paper to all public campus copier machines and printers. While the PCC encourages the use of the ‘double-sided’ paper feature when photocopying, the decision to do so is left up to individual. It is also up to departmental discretion to have a ‘scrap paper’ tray in their copier or to keep a recycle bin next to the copy machine. It is very important that the University develop a universal procurement policy for paper and plastic materials. While the costs are higher for small orders, ordering paper and other daily items in bulk may offset the cost margin. For example, in 1996, the University of Oregon established a Recycled Paper Policy which required all print orders to be chlorine-free and contain at least 50% recycled content and 30% post-consumer content fiber. With the adoption of a paper procurement policy, we can be a leader among liberal-arts institutions and our ACS peers.