Going green is certainly en vogue these days and for good reason. Deforestation and pollution are a serious issues but eliminating printed documents from the business world to slow their progress simply isn’t a viable solution. Instead, businesses need to print smarter! And we can help you do that.
Luckily, what is good for the planet can be just as good for your business. There are a number of ways to Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle office equipment, paper, and energy that can significantly reduce an organization’s carbon footprint and save money. Below you’ll find our latest tips for going green to boost your sustainability efforts and help you save YOUR green!
If you’re located in Duluth or Atlanta, you’re already contributing to the sustainability movement by working with with Superior! Doing business with nearby vendors helps support the local economy and reduces ozone-depleting emissions from shipping and transport. To further reduce your company’s contribution to atmospheric fuel emissions, look for paper manufactured and distributed by rail or ship within 300 miles of you.
Maximizing Every Page
It may sound obvious, but the more printing you fit per page, the less paper you’ll use. Make sure to use narrow margins whenever possible and try to always print front and back. Most of our printers make two-sided printing easy with built-in two-sided printing capabilities. By sizing projects to maximize blank space, your amount of waste and paper use can be greatly reduced.
Switching Paper Fibers
The most environmentally-friendly paper fibers do not come from trees. For example, in North America, straw, a byproduct of agricultural crops, is ideal for paper pulp because of its tensile quality. The second best paper fiber option comes from plants such as hemp and bamboo that have strong fibers, grow rapidly and require little to no pesticides or herbicides. The most readily available choice, however, is paper made from 100% recycled paper. This is made with paper recovered from recycling programs, which reduces landfill waste and eliminates the need to harvest fiber for printing purposes entirely. Each ton of 100% post-consumer recycled fiber used in place of newly manufactured product saves 12 to 24 trees.
Using Natural Inks
Certain inks can be quite harmful to the environment due either to their inability to be recycled or there tendency to contaminate groundwater. Currently, the best options on the market are vegetable-based inks and water-based coatings because they contain less VOCs and IPA solvents than traditional petroleum-based inks. Not all printers can use these inks. If you must make a more conventional ink choice, avoid ink that could contain metallic elements because they are the most toxic and the least likely to decompose easily. If your printer has a green ink usage setting, which many of our printers do, be sure to turn that on as well.
Purchasing Offset Credits
Another new-fangled way of counteracting carbon emissions from printing and using up energy is by purchasing carbon offset credits. These credits help support projects that reduce the emission of greenhouse gases. Search online for Green-e Climate Certified Carbon Offsets for more information on these credits.
To identify which Green Ideas best fit your company’s operations, contact us for a free “Going Green” evaluation.