Going GREEN with Online Payments

A U.S. study released a few years ago (Reuters) showed that if just one household ditched their paper statement and paid online we would save 24 square feet of forest a year.  Is this still the case in 2014?

The study found the average U.S. household receives about 19 bills and statements every month and makes about seven payments by paper each month.

By switching to paying online, the average American household would save 6.6 pounds of paper a year, save 0.08 trees, and not produce 171 pounds of greenhouse gases — the equivalent of driving 169 miles.

The survey, whose results were vetted by the Environmental Protection Agency, said it would also mean avoiding the deforestation of 24 square feet of forest, the release of 63 gallons of wastewater into the environment, and save 4.5 gallons of gasoline used for mailing.

The study found that Americans each year mail 26 billion bills and statements and 9 billion payments in paper form with the related production and transportation consuming 755 million pounds of paper, 9 million trees, and 512 million gallons of gasoline.

The survey found that if 10 percent of U.S. households, or about 11.4 million households, gave up paper bills and statements the results would be significant.

It would save 75,469,808 pounds of paper, 905,638 trees, avoid producing 1.96 million pounds of greenhouse gases which was the equivalent of taking 162,861 cars off the road.

It would also preserve 6,202 acres of forest from deforestation, avoid creating 719,800,685 gallons of wastewater which is enough to fill 1,090 Olympic-size swimming pools, and avoid filling 3,071 garbage trucks with waste.  Something to think about even in 2014.

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