As your company grows it is a good idea to look at the procedures in your business to ensure your company is doing everything it can to reduce the environmental impact.This is not to say you or your staff are not environmental conscience, it's just we all have areas of improvement.
Whether you are a one-person shop or a print shop employing hundreds of people, we all can make a difference in how eco-friendly our screen printing, digital printing, graphics, and embroidery businesses run.
Listed below are four important areas of environmental management to review at your shop:
- Air pollution, e.g. releasing volatile organic compounds (VOCs) into the atmosphere due to solvents use.
- Handling and disposing of hazardous materials, such as solvent and/or chemical wastes whether in landfill or wastewater.
- Solid Waste, including the reuse, recycling, and disposal of inks, paper, textiles, supply bottles, boxes, and buckets.
- Energy use from the printing process and transport contribute to greenhouse gas emissions and climate change.
The benefits of good practice of environmental
management goes beyond being good citizens:
• You will develop a reputation as an environmental conscience company.
• Win contracts because you are now a 'supplier of choice’, particularly to corporate and local and state government clients who purchase from suppliers with green procurement policies.
• Improved employee satisfaction, retention, and productivity. Employees are generally happier and more productive in a workplace that is clean, healthy, and environmentally responsible.
Where to get started? Start with an analysis of the four environmental management areas outlined. Whether it is just you or a task force made up of staff members, create goals for each month or quarter to see how you can minimize your business' impact on the environment. Review at the conclusion of the selected time period,. and share the results with everyone. Post it on the wall, show staff, vendors, customers that the efforts you and your team are putting forth are making a difference. Then tackle the next goal(s), most importantly keep raising the bar, and always measure the results. You know... SMART goals (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, Time-bound)
In addition, set some long-range financial goals. Plan for a portion of your capital investment to go towards equipment that will help your business become more eco-friendly, whether it is a filtration system, computer-to-screen printer, green energy sources, or more energy-efficient equipment. A good investment can make a large environmental impact as well as a financial gain.
In the end, we all win from you and your team's efforts in keeping your community, state, nation, and the world a better place to live.