An analysis of people's attitudes & behaviors towards office paper recycling in Maine

Klotz, Deborah W.
Alexandra Dawson
Department of Environmental Studies
In the state of Maine, high grade white paper is virtually an untapped recycling resource in the office/business environment. This study seeks to provide a framework to learn more about the behaviors and attitudes of employees towards recycling high grade paper in an office/business environment in the state of Maine. A short historical overview of garbage and humans will lead the reader into the importance of recycling as a component in managing our solid waste. A historical perspective of Maine's recycling laws will be reviewed. The focus of this paper is on recycling high grade paper in a business environment. A questionnaire was designed as a methodology to identify attitudes and behaviors of employees towards recycling high grade paper at work. Emphasis was placed on social attitudes/values, environment, educational training, and motivating factors. The questionnaire was distributed to four local businesses that had established office paper recycling programs in the Portland, Maine area. The data will then be collectively analyzed to determine its statistical significance. The information that was extrapolated from these questionnaire responses reflected key themes and patterns that identified the strengths and weaknesses of office paper recycling programs. Conclusions and recommendations from this data were made to improve the collection aspect of office paper recycling programs for businesses in the state of Maine.

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