Frequently Asked Questions
Can you compost newspaper?
Almost all forms of clean, non-treated paper can be composted. The dry material will help balance the ratio of “green” (carbon-rich) and “brown” (nitrogen-rich) materials in your pile, and since most modern newspapers are printed with plant-based inks, you don’t have to worry about contaminating your compost.
If you have an organic garden or are concerned about non-organic inks finding their way into your pile, check your local newspaper’s website or give them a call to inquire about the type of ink they use.
As an alternative, you can also try the “dig a hole” method of composting. Simply dig a one-foot hole anywhere in your yard, gradually add your newspaper and cover the hole with a board or bricks until it’s full.
How do you use newspaper in vermicomposting?
“Vermicomposting” refers to using worms to break down your organic waste, and it can go a long way toward keeping household trash cans empty. A standard vermicomposting system is made up of three key components; a bin, worms and a handful of bedding.
Used for both food and shelter, adequate bedding is key for a successful vermicomposting system. Damp newspaper strips are the most common bedding material, meaning you can use all of your old newspaper at home if you have a worm bin set up. You can also use other types of recycled paper in your worm bin, including white office paper, cardboard and non-glossy magazines.
How can you reuse newspaper in crafts?
Recycled newspaper can be reused in a variety of crafty applications, from picture frame mats to decoupaged tabletops. Check out these 10 gorgeous reuse ideas for old book and map pages which can be easily re-worked to repurpose your newspaper.
Can you recycle wet or soiled newspaper?
Food is one of the worst contaminants in the paper recycling process. Grease, oil and other liquids are not as big of a problem for plastic, metal and glass, as those materials are recycled using a heat process. But when paper products like newspaper are recycled, they are mixed with water and turned into a slurry. Since we all know water and oil don’t mix, the issue is clear.
To avoid contaminating your local recycling stream, toss your food-soiled newspaper in the trash, or remove all soiled portions before recycling. If your newspaper is simply wet from sitting on your doorstep in the rain, you can still recycle it.
Can you recycle the plastic bag that is often wrapped around newspapers?
You can recycle this bag with other plastic bags and film packaging. Most grocery stores accept plastic bags, film and wraps for recycling, so be on the lookout for a collection bin on your next shopping trip, or jump to the recycling locator to find a drop-off site near you.