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Environmental Impact On Recycling Wooden Pallets

03 Sep 2018

Recycling wooden pallets can have a hugely positive impact on the environment. This can help to save millions of trees every year and the demand for trees is greatly reduced by recycling initiatives in the wooden pallet industry. Read on for more details about the environmental impact on recycling wooden pallets.

preventing damage to pallets

How Many Pallets are Produced Each Year?

It is estimated that around 2 billion pallets are in service right now and that up to 450 million pallets are produced every year from fresh wood. But instead of cutting down trees whenever new logs are required to make the pallets, the industry is recycling old pallets. The impact on the environment from this recycling effort has been significant.

There are some pleasing results thus far. Recycling figures show that over 350 million pallets are reused by pallet users and that less than 1% of recovered pallets go into landfill sites. If a pallet cannot be reused in its intended form as another wooden pallet, it can still be recycled to be reused as mulch. This means that even pallets that are beyond repair can be useful for the recycling industry, adding to the positive environmental impact on recycling wooden pallets.

Looking at how wooden pallets are made and how much wood is required to make them, it is estimated that one tree can provide two 10′ logs, which can then be made into pallets. A standard pallet of the regular size 48×40 GMA tends to be 15.17 board feet long. If the log has a diameter of 14″ the footage of the log is 63 board feet. With this detailed information, we can deduce that we can get 4 wooden pallets from each log.

Recycling Saves 43.5 Million Trees Every Year

To learn more about the figures involved, we can then divide the number of recycled pallets by 4 pallets per log. This teaches us that an incredible 87 million logs are used to produce this number of wooden pallets. If there are 2 logs per tree and we recycle 350 million pallets every year, this shows us that the environmental impact of recycling wooden pallets results in a saving of 43.5 million trees every year.

This incredible recycling effort means that raw material costs are kept down and the supply of wood is kept at a reasonable level without too much demand on the tree stock. This shows just how important recycling is in the wooden pallet industry and the huge environmental impact recycling initiatives have had over the years.

The Environmental Impact

The environmental impact on recycling wooden pallets means that more trees can be saved, as fewer trees are needed to produce wooden pallets for the pallet industry. This saving of trees not only benefits the environment but also benefits human health, as trees can absorb carbon dioxide from the air and increase oxygen levels. It is important that the recycling efforts are continued so that the environment is protected and the pallet industry can continue working in a sustainable fashion.

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