The world is becoming more and more environmentally conscious – and for good reason. Printing can take its toll on the environment, but there are ways you can make your business more eco-friendly. This will not only reduce your impact on the planet, but present you to your customers as a company that cares and accepts their social responsibility.
Here are some small changes you can make that will benefit the environment:
Reuse and Recycle
Opting to use recycled paper and remanufactured ink cartridges can lessen your carbon footprint without impacting the quality of your prints. And don’t worry, the ink won’t be partially used, these are simply cartridges that have been repurposed instead of thrown away, giving them a new life. Similarly, look into suitable recycling for your cartridges once they come to the end of their lives instead of putting them in the general rubbish bin.
Turn it Off
Many businesses keep their printers running all day long, even when they’re only used a couple of times. Check to see if your model offers a power-saving mode or simply switch it off when you know it’s not going to be used again for some hours. And it goes without saying your machine should be unplugged overnight. This will also help to reduce your energy costs, saving you money and the planet.
You might have use for a printer, scanner, photocopier and fax machine, but there are multifunction printers that can do this all for you. This means that instead of having four separate devices plugged in all day, you can just have one. It’s unlikely all of these functions will be needed all at once, making a single printer more than enough for most offices.
Going completely paperless isn’t practical for most businesses, but that doesn’t mean you can’t cut down on your paper trail. Offering customers a paperless option for marketing communications is typically well-received and can save you costs. You could also send more emails and use shared online documents during meetings, reducing the need for internal paper communications. If you do use paper internally, make sure it gets recycled properly. You can shred anything with sensitive information on before placing it in your recycling bin.
Say No to Colour
If colour isn’t essential to the understanding of your document, then use greyscale. You can even use the draft setting to print hard copies for internal meetings or for personal reference. Using coloured inks to achieve intense, crisp results uses more energy and takes longer to print. If the document you’re printing will be in the bin within a matter of days, don’t waste resources on making it look its best.
Old printers may not be as efficient as newer models and could be using a lot more energy than you realise. However, make sure you dispose of your printer responsibly and choose a new machine that will be with you for many years to reduce waste.