Last night Sensis, which is owned by Telstra, dropped off the Yellow Pages. This also included 'Yellow™ In the Car', which is a mini paper version of the yellow pages. The whole package weighed 5 kilos.
The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates there are over 8.1 million households in Australia. So if we do a rough calculation and bring the number up to 9 million to include the businesses who still get the paper version of the yellow pages we get:
5 kilograms * 9 million = 45,000 tonnes of paper!
That's a lot of paper, and that does not take into account the white pages.
If considering the impact on the environment, this does not include the cost of producing or delivering these directories. Basically we are talking about a lot of energy consumption and green house gases.
Is this really necessary? More and more Australian's have Internet access, so surely for the environment's sake, Sensis should offer an easy opt out service for people do not want the print version. I for one did not bother to open the last few years print versions of the yellow pages. They send them to me and I put them straight into the recycling. What a waste of paper and resources.
If I need to find a phone number, I either use either Google or the yellow pages online. This brings me to the new(ish) Sensis product: 'Yellow™ In the Car'. If you have a mobile, and especially if you have a 3G mobile, why would you use a print version of the yellow pages in the car.
Maybe there needs to be some direct action. If Australian's started dumping all their unused and unopened yellow pages and white pages into their local Telstra shop it would become Telstra's problem to deal with the recycling. Would this open their eyes to the waste they are causing!?! Maybe, maybe not, but direct action is sounding pretty good.