TAMPA — For every ton of paper they shred and recycle, Hillsborough County sheriff's deputies say they save 17 trees, 60,000 gallons of water, 225 kilowatt hours and 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space.
They've already shredded 72 tons, with about 4,000 boxes to go.
The Sheriff's Office continued a shredding practice Friday morning that started in 2007 in an effort to recycle documents from more than 15,000 cardboard boxes. Normally, all those boxes would cost about $79,000 annually to store.
The Sheriff's Office's shifted to a paperless report and inmate processing system three years ago.
A total of 23.6 million pages have been scanned from 11,418 of the stored boxes. About 900 more boxes were scanned Friday and transferred to hard drives, said Larry McKinnon, Sheriff's Office spokesman.
It's 10 cents cheaper per box to shred and recycle the paper than to send it to the incinerator, and transportation costs are cut, deputies said. Storages boxes are reused, which saves about $27,000 each year. Reusing file folders saves $20,000 each year.
"By going green we're playing our part in helping preserve our environment," said McKinnon.