Introducing Karst Stone Paper
Wouldn’t it be nice if we were able to produce paper without having to cut down trees? And if it were to be done, would it be done in a way that was also environmentally friendly and sustainable?
On the surface it sounds like a tough feat but this is exactly what Karst, an alternative paper producer has managed to pull off and offer to the world.
With their paper made out of ground down recycled marble and limestone, it is now possible for us to use a paper that doesn’t require the use of trees and is infinitely recyclable. So in essence, the same paper could be used over and over again until the end of time.
Negatives of traditional paper
The production of traditional paper, as a lot of people are already aware, has a lot of negative consequences. Karst go through these in detail on their website and I have included some of their points below.
To start with, the paper industry is the fifth largest consumer of energy worldwide and uses 4% of the total worldwide energy each year. This is a big deal. Who’d have thought that for something seemingly so simple to produce is responsible for using such a big percentage of the world’s energy?
Couple this with the amount of water it takes to produce traditional paper and it’s quite astounding to realise what exactly goes into the sheets of paper most of us use on a daily basis.
The paper industry uses more water per tonne of product than any other industry on Earth. It takes 27 gallons of water to produce 9 A4 sheets of printer paper. It takes 15,500 gallons to produce 1 metric tonne of traditional paper and although recycling pulped paper uses significantly less water it still takes 5,800 gallons of water to produce a tonne of paper. Also traditional paper can only be recycled between 5 and 7 times so there will always be a need to cut down trees while we continue to use traditional paper.
There are also the obvious consequences that come to mind when everybody thinks of paper and that is deforestation. Of course, this destroys the habitat of wildlife. According to National Geographic, Seventy percent of the world’s plants and animals live in forests and are losing their habitats to deforestation. The earth loses 18.7 million acres of forest each year for many reasons including paper production and surely anything we can do to help reduce this should be explored and supported.
Deforestation is also blamed for having a negative impact on our worlds climate as it reduces an areas ability to store carbon, not to mention the carbon output during the process of deforestation.
Karst Stone Paper
Karst Stone Paper was founded in 2017 by Kevin Garcia and Jonathon Tse after coming across a single sheet of stone paper and being amazed by its waterproof and tear resistant qualities, the two decided to go to Taiwan to see for themselves how this amazing product is produced.
This trip was enough for the two to realise that they could turn this into a business and offer stone paper to the world.
What they have managed to produce at Karst are beautifully designed notepads, journals and planners that are not only aesthetically pleasing but are also effortless to write on due to there being no grain in the paper and users of their products report how their pens glide across the paper for an altogether more enjoyable writing experience. Users also describe how the sheets are smoother, brighter and more durable than traditional paper. Stone paper is tear resistant but still folds and also cuts easily with scissors or a knife. Also due to its waterproof qualities you no longer have to worry if you spill a drink on your notes!
Karst re-purpose waste marble and limestone produced by the mining industry and old stone from landfills so they have no need to mine the Earth in order to source their materials. All of their books are made from recycled material and each product itself can be recycled infinitely so the whole process is a perfect loop of sustainability.
For every tonne of stone paper produced, a total of 18 trees are saved. As well as this, Karst work with the One Tree Planted Foundation and with every book sold a tree gets planted in either North America, South America, Asia or Africa so with every purchase we are not only saving trees but paying for a new tree to be planted.
As mentioned earlier in the article, it takes 27 gallons on water to produce only 9 A4 sheets of traditional paper. In comparison with the same 27 gallons of water, an entire tonne of stone paper can be produced. This is a dramatic reduction in water usage compared to the traditional way of producing paper and is just another amazing plus point to this company and their products.
We at APE believe that what Karst have done, besides from giving us an alternative paper, is they have shown us how to search and strive for better ways to do things that we have done the same way for a very long time.
They are a fantastic example of how an innovative idea can potentially upset the status quo and can help change the world for the better. They have shown us that the future of our planet could be a brighter one if more people follow their lead and look to alternative, friendlier, smarter ideas and decide to help in their own way to change the world.
Thank you for reading