Reduce Your Printing

The Campus Sustainability Council, in collaboration with the Managed Print Team at ITS, is actively working to reduce waste from printing on campus. On this page you will find tips for reducing your personal printing, as well as information on why it is important to reduce printed pages on campus.

Why Reduce Printing?

Paper and ink seem so insubstantial that it can be challenging to understand their environmental impact. Most know that paper comes from trees, but the environmental impact of paper production reaches far beyond the forest that created the raw materials. An average tree used to produce pulp for making paper will ultimately net about 8000 sheets, but requires substantial inputs of water, energy, and industrial chemicals.

Double-Sided Printing

Changing your font can both reduce the number of pages needed to print a document, as well as the amount of ink necessary to print those pages.

  • Any font labeled as "condensed" will occupy less space compared to its uncondensed version.
  • To condense any font, highlight your text > right click > select "Font" > select "Advanced" > modify your scaling or condense settings.
    • Condensing by .5 pts or scaling down to 80% reduces text's footprint with minimal reduction in readability
  • Fonts like Arial, Tahoma, Calibri and Verdana occupy less space as well.
  • Download and use "Ecofont" which reduces ink usage without sacrificing readability.
  • Consider using a 50% gray instead of 100% black for your font color.
  • Reducing font size is the easiest way to reduce both ink and space usage.
Document Setup

By default, new documents in Microsoft Word feature excess whitespace at the margins, the header, the footer, and between lines.

Print Dialog

The printing dialog on most operating systems contains useful features for reducing the number of pages you print.


Many companies offer software that can help save important sites, pages, emails, and more for easy access without ever needing to print.

  • Consider downloading Evernote or a similar productivity app on your phone and computer
  • Other apps like Google Drive or Pushbullet also offer high-quality cloud services for storing and moving documents.
Facts about Papercut
  • Over 14 million sheets printed since the 2014-2015 academic year
    • That equates to roughly 1800 trees. For reference, the college's arborist has cataloged over 2150 trees on campus.
  • Print jobs tend to peak during Block 1 every year and over 50,000 pages are printed on peak days
  • Your monthly Printing Summary email from the Sustainability Council and ITS details the number of pages you printed, however, this does not account for duplex print jobs (double sided) and simplex jobs (single sided). As such, the number of sheets you printed may be less than the number of pages.
    • Print jobs are only counted once they have been released from the printer's que, Papercut will automatically cancel any job that has not been released from the que for two hours.
    • Print jobs sent directly to a non-Papercut printer is processed and tallied immediately
  • Students outnumber Staff and Faculty by roughly 4:1, however Staff and Faculty collectively print 53% of the total annual pages
Report an issue - Last updated: 09/17/2021