You may remember that when I was reporting on a Grand Committee debate in the Moses Room, I asked the Minister whether or not his waste regulations, chasing us all to be more responsible recyclers, was printed on recycled paper. Lord Henley, a self-confessed “waste nerd”, admitted he didn’t know but has now been kind enough to reply with a detailed letter.
You learn something everyday. In his letter he writes,
I am advised that, in line with TSO’s policy on the printing of all primary and secondary legislation, the text of the Regulations (i.e. excluding the covers) was printed using paper that has a minimum recycled content of 30%. The paper used by TSO is 80gsm Sovereign White Wove which ahs archival properties that enhance the shelf life of the printed documents. I understand that increasing the recycled content beyond that currently used by TSO would conflict with these archival properties.
TSO have advised us that two different stocks are used to produce the thicker covers for legislation and that neither of these stocks contains recycled content. The stocks used by TSO for the cover are 160gsm Vanguard Cream Vellum, which is accredited by the Forest Stewardship Council, and 160gsm Kaskad Sparrow Grey.
I am also pleased to confirm that TSO are discussing with the National Archives the feasibility of including in future a statement in printed legislation on the recycled content of the paper that has been used.
In these days of electronic archiving, do you think that these excuses are worth paper they are written on?