Oregon DEQ recommends residents who don't need new phone book to opt out by contacting publishers, says recycling three-pound phone book reduces GHG emissions by 5.9 pounds of CO2 equivalent, but not printing phone book reduces it by 18.1 pounds
January 12, 2012
– Trying to minimize your environmental footprint in 2012? One of the best ways to reduce your footprint is to reduce stuff—especially unsolicited stuff that’s delivered to your door.
One example is phone books. Some people receive many copies from many different companies. The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality recommends that if you don't need a new phone book you can opt out by contacting book publishers or registering.
DEQ estimates that in 2003 there were 6.45 million sets of white/yellow pages published and distributed in Oregon, and there were only 1.33 million households in the state. And that was nine years ago. Nationally, only about 20 percent of phone books are recycled. The rest end up in landfills or are burned.
Visit www.yellowpagesoptout.com to opt out of phone books for all publishers.
Contact phone book publishers to opt out or reduce your phone book order. For DEX/Qwest, go to dexknows.com and select "Directory Options" at the bottom. Enter your Zip Code and click through screens until you see "Personalize Your Directory Order." Or you can call 800-422-8793 and press 2 to speak with a representative.
For Yellow Book, call 800-929-3556 and press 3 to speak with a representative. For other phone books, check on the front cover or inside page for a customer service number to "order directories."
Curbside recycling in Oregon accepts phone books. Recycling a three-pound phone book reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 5.9 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent. Preventing (not printing) that same phone book reduces greenhouse gas emissions by more than three times that amount − 18.1 pounds of carbon dioxide equivalent.
For more information about sustainable living visit the DEQ Web site at www.oregon.gov/DEQ/