Paper-Newt Glossary of Terms

Definitions of Paper-Newt Terminology

Not sure what something means or how we define a term?  Then check out the following Paper-Newt terms and their definitions:

  1. BTU: A British Thermal Unit (BTU) is a measurement for the amount of heat energy needed to raise the temperature of one pound of water by one degree fahrenheit.
  2. FSC: The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an international certification and labeling system dedicated to promoting responsible management of the world’s forests.
  3. Paper-Negation: Paper-negation is the act of becoming paper-negative.
  4. Paper-Negative: An organization is paper-negative if the net environmental impact of the organization’s paper-related activities leaves the environment better off than if the organization never interacted with paper.  Typically, if you use paper (whether recycled or non-recycled) there will be a negative impact on the environment.  If you offset your impact completely, and so have zero net impact on the environment, then you are technically paper-neutral.  If you go above and beyond and so more than offset the environmental impact of your paper use, then essentially you are paper-negative. (Click here to learn more about the difference between paper-neutral and paper-negative).
  5. Paper-Neutral: If the positive impacts of your paper activities completely offset the negative impacts of your paper activities then your net paper impact is zero (i.e., you are paper-neutral).  If you use paper (recycled or non-recycled), there will be a negative impact on the environment.  If you recycle your own paper or use only 100% recycled paper, you’ll reduce your impact but won’t eliminate it.  However, if you reduce the impact of other people’s paper use (like by enabling them to use recycled paper where they would not otherwise do so), then the positive impact of your actions can offset the negative impact of your paper use.  Offset the environment damage of your paper use 100% and you become paper-neutral.  Offset the impact of your paper use more than 100% and you become paper-negative (which is a funny situation where the negative is actually a positive!) (Click here to learn more about the difference between paper-neutral and paper-negative).
  6. Paper-Newt: A paper-newt is a fictitious (and trademarked) creature that symbolizes what we do at here at Paper-Newt, the paper reduction initiative.  (Click here to learn more about the Paper-Newt program.  And click here to learn more about newts).
  7. Paper-Newt Certified Paper Supplier: Paper-Newt certified paper suppliers are suppliers of recycled paper (typically an office supply store) that meets certain standards set by the Paper-Newt program, is authorized to offer the Paper-Newt brand of paper, and partners with the Paper-Newt program to fulfill our mission to encourage businesses to adopt sustainable paper use practices and enable non-profit organizations to do the same.
  8. Paper-Newted: To become Paper-Newted means to become wither paper-neutral or paper-negative through the Paper-Newt program, or to receive a paper-newt-ralizing benefit through the program (e.g., like for a non-profit to receive a donation of 100% recycled paper).
  9. Post-Consumer: Post-consumer recycled paper is produced using paper discarded after being used by consumers, such as old office paper, newspapers, and other scraps of paper that people have put in their “blue boxes” or otherwise set aside for recycling.  Pre-consumer paper, on the other hand, is paper used in recycling that was never used by (or even reached) consumers.
  10. Qualified Non-Profit: to be a “qualified Paper-Newt paper offset recipient,” a non-profit needs to (1) practice paper conservation (e.g., the 3 R’s of paper conservation), (2) register with the Paper-Newt program, and (3) not otherwise use 100% recycled paper.  This last criteria might seem odd, but in order for a business to legitimately offset its paper footprint, the business needs to help a non-profit replace its virgin non-recycled paper use with the use of 100% recycled paper.  If a business donates recycled paper to a non-profit that already uses recycled paper, that’s really nice, but it doesn’t actually result in an environmental gain.  (To make up for it, Paper-Newt helps non-profits that already use recycled paper in other ways).
  11. Ton: 2000 pounds equals one US ton.  2240 pounds equals one British ton.  (Yes, very confusing isn’t it).  For Paper-Newt purposes we use the American ton of 2000 pounds.

This glossary of terms is a work in progress.  There is more to come, so stay tuned (or Contact Us with more definition suggestions and we’ll see if we can add them in for you).