The print technology has been around for decades since Johannes Gutenberg invented the first printing machine in the middle of the 15th century. However, as printing evolved, it left a trail of environmental degradation in the form of depleted forests. What most people don’t know is that printing doesn’t need to be harmful to the environment.
The environment is in dire need of saving. By adopting environment-friendly printing methods, you will be playing your part in doing so. Before sending a document to print, first consider digital print formats and only print on paper if you absolutely have to.
Here are the eight best practices for environment friendly printing:
1. Recycle Cartridges
Recycling toner and ink cartridges help cut down waste. Most people don’t know the benefits of recycling cartridges. Manufacturers offer recycling programs to make things easier for their customers. Just look for instructions from their websites.
By making recycling a standard practice throughout the office space, you will quickly reduce waste. However, make sure the recycling process isn’t too complicated for your employees. Some third parties will pay for your recycled cartridges. You can also donate them to charity since most of the components in a cartridge can be reused.
2. Double-Sided Printing
Among the most effective and easiest ways of reducing the impact of printing on the environment is by making use of double-sided printing. Printing on both sides of the paper cuts down the number of necessary sheets by half.
By making double-sided printing a company-wide policy, you end up saving trees and your money. Modern computers and printers feature the option of printing on both sides of the paper. You can implement this policy at your workplace or on campus by training the employees or students on how to set up the printer for double-sided printing.
3. Go Paperless
Going entirely paperless is almost impossible, but there are ways you can cut down the volume of printing in your office. Modern technology has made it possible to adopt paperless solutions that significantly reduce the need to print on paper.
For example, every smartphone and computer is capable of taking digital notes. Some applications are free, but if you want more robust options, go for a paid service. A smartphone, or a tablet, can also scan documents so you can access digital copies of your documents whenever you need them. This is an environment friendly printing alternative that anyone can use.
4. Find a Green Ink Supplier
Some ink suppliers are aggressively prioritizing environmental conservation by producing inks that are friendly to the environment. These include vegetable- and soy-based inks that use renewable sources. For peace of mind, get your ink from such suppliers since traditional inks are harmful to the environment.
Seek to establish if a manufacturer is ISO-certified, meaning they observe environment-friendly practices. An ISO certification demonstrates a company’s commitment to protecting the environment. This is a simple, effective way of adapting to environment friendly printing methods and reducing your organization’s ecological impact.
5. Use Print Review
Another easy way of lowering printing waste is by merely making use of the print preview option. Before sending a document to the printer, check if there are any typos, errors, or other mistakes using the print preview feature. This way, you get to make the necessary changes before sending the document to print.
6. Use Recycled Paper
Recycled paper uses less energy, water and chemicals. Compared to manufacturing regular paper, recycled paper uses 40% less energy. Besides, manufacturing recycled paper significantly reduces pollution levels. There are different types of recycled paper in the market today. These range from 30% recycled to 100% recycled.
Whatever your printing needs are, there is always a type of recycled paper you can use. Recycling paper reduces the volume of paper waste that finds its way into landfills by one-third. Apart from being environment-friendly, recycled paper is also cost-effective.
7. Use Energy-Efficient Printers
Nowadays, it’s easy to find commercial and home printers, or imaging equipment, with Energy Star standards. The Environmental Protection Agency sets these standards to ensure products are as energy-efficient as possible. Printers with Energy Star standards use as little energy as possible, but they still get the job done.
Just because they use less power doesn’t mean quality is compromised. They work just as well as a standard printer. Energy-efficient flexographic printers are an excellent investment for any business. Besides, having such a printer in the office is both cost-efficient and environment-friendly. A company using an Energy Star printer can save thousands of dollars every year.
8. Watch the Printer Settings
Choosing the proper print mode, and correct font can significantly reduce toner and ink use. For example, Cambria and Calibri fonts have thin characters that require less toner or ink to produce. For inter-office use, set your printer to “draft mode.”
Reserve high-quality printing for documents meant for distribution outside the company. If a full-colour document is not necessary, choose the “black ink only” option. It’s also a good idea to set double-sided printing as your default.