New Erasable Ink Could Be Boon to Office Recycling

Invisible ink was once the province of spies, then of children — and now of environmentalists? Beginning Monday, tech industry giant Toshiba will sell a new, disappearing ink in Japan that is designed to enable easier reuse and recycling. The ink, called “e-blue,” can be used in ordinary laser printers as well as in pens, and disappears when heated. The ink is made of three chemicals, two of which combine to give it its color, while the third, when heated, makes the ink turn transparent. Toshiba is also selling a desktop erasing machine that can wipe 200 pages of paper clean in two hours. Office paper accounts for about 40 percent of all office waste in Japan, where just 60 percent of it is recycled.