Tyler, TX (KYTX) -- It's the most wasted material ending up in our landfills, with Americans recycling only 22 percent of our paper products.
But stacks of newspapers and magazines don't clutter Joanne Hill's home anymore.
"We subscribe to about 10 magazines, so it's constant paper at our house," Hill said.
Hill takes her stash to the Tyler Recycling Center downtown once a month to go green."I think it's just good practice to reuse, and it makes me feel good," Hill said.
But at first, she says it was a learning curve. "I started just bringing newspapers and magazines, and then I got to looking around, and saw there's a ton of stuff you can recycle," Hill said.
It's true paper could be seen as a "gateway" material in recycling. People start off with it and are inspired to try other things too.
And once it's out of your hands, the City of Tyler sells paper dropped off to a company, which gives it a new purpose.
"They mix it with fertilizer. It's sprayed on the ground as an erosion barrier at new construction sites," Gary Lynch, Recycling Center Coordinator for Tyler, said.
Altogether, your newspapers, magazines, office paper, and phone books make paper the most common material filling up bins and elsewhere.
"Paper makes up about 30 percent of items that people throw away everyday, so it's also the largest content in the waste stream," Lynch said.