Posts Tagged ‘reduce’

Since our meeting with Dave Goebel from Missouri Enterprise, I’ve been researching our options for updating Sportsprint’s lighting system.  Right now our facility is equipped with all T12 lights, and we want to upgrade to the more energy efficient T8 lamps.  Actually, we could go further and upgrade to T5 lights, which are even more energy efficient.  You know how the day after you buy a new computer it’s already old news?  That’s what happened with T8 lighting- just as we’re looking into transitioning to T8, we learn that T8 lighting is already being phased out!  It’s both the wonder and frustration of technology.

Since there’s so much green funding available these days, a (hopefully) substantial proportion of our improvement project can be funded by incentive programs.  Plus the Lean, Clean and Green Assessment estimated this would save us about $1000/year!  Not too shabby.  There are tons of incentives out there if you’re interested in upgrading either your business or your home.  Here’s the database of incentives I found when researching funding.  Missouri has a lot of great programs.  Maybe you can get your next project partially or fully funded for you!

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Even though I’ve talked about reusing Lard and Kahlua boxes, I haven’t shared a bigger list of what Sportprint is doing to go green.   So here are some examples of what else we’re doing!

  • Implemented paper recycling program through Pedro’s Planet
  • Use recycled and biodegradable packaging: we reuse our boxes and use biodegradable bags (we even have an additive that speeds up the process!)
  • Reuse screens used for our t-shirts
  • Use waste computer paper for printing process (some of our stencils are made of discarded cardstock)
  • Recycle beverage containers, buy communal items (soap, sugar, coffee, etc.) in bulk, use cloth towels

Our first major step in greening Sportsprint was participating in the Missouri Enterprise Lean, Clean and Green Assessment, which was an assessment of what we do well and what we can improve on.  Just yesterday we had our one year follow up meeting!  Tomorrow I’ll update you on our assessment and follow-up meeting.

Here’s a link to our recycler, Pedro’s Planet.  They sell office supplies and take our recycling when they deliver the supplies.  Also, they’re super.

Green fun fact, courtesy of ecofabulous: If every UK office worker used one less staple a day, we’d save 120 tons of steel.  Just goes to show how even the tiniest changes add up.

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When it comes to products, the 3 R’s {Reduce – Reuse – Recycle} can help to determine how eco-friendly it is.

  • Reduce the impact of the material the product is made from.
  • Buy high-quality products that can be re-used easily and often.
  • Recycle the scraps created from the manufacturing process.

Ask these questions about the product:

  1. What type of material is the product made from?
    • Is it recycled?
    • Is it from a fast-renewing resource?
    • Is it produced LITE*-ly? (*with Low Impact to the Environment)
  2. What is the product’s lifecycle?
    • Will it bio-degrade easily?
    • Is it durable enough to be re-used over and over again?
    • Is it recyclable?
  3. How does the supplier reduce its impact on the environment?
    • Does the supplier aim to reduce its carbon footprint?

 Determining the “green”ness of a product can be a grey area. You’ll need to decide which components are most important to you. For example, using a local supplier is more eco-friendly than shipping in from another continent, but the organic cotton grown in Turkey and Pakistan puts less toxic chemicals into our ecosystems than conventionally-grown cotton in the U.S.

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