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3 steps to reduce your carbon footprint in production printing

As a business or operation, carbon neutral status appeals to both potential customers and corporate heads, creating a compelling story for increased revenue opportunities and work. Indeed, as we’re talking about eliminating wasteful processes, it can also help reduce costs and improve your bottom line.

So when it comes to reducing your carbon footprint in production print environments, there are three steps that can help you to become carbon neutral.

1. Analyse your current carbon emissions
The starting point for any carbon reduction programme is an in-depth analysis to determine the annual carbon emissions of your printing activity. Look to analyse areas such as your production systems, the paper used, energy consumption, delivery distances of supplies and even the travelling distances of engineers to service your machines.

2. Optimise your carbon footprint
Look out for ways to connect with resources and services to help you through every stage of becoming more sustainable. Access to a carbon calculator will enable you to identify the carbon generated per print job. This will allow you to calculate greener ways to produce the job by using different types of recycled media for example.

Look for ways to minimise energy consumption and minimise print waste in your regular production processes and review recycling practices of both output and machine supplies. Continue to monitor your printing processes with a view to minimising carbon emissions on an on-going basis.

3. Neutralise your remaining and unavoidable carbon emissions
Even when every possible step has been taken to optimise the production process and minimise the environmental effects, there will still be unavoidable carbon emissions. A final step would be to neutralise the remaining emissions generated by production printing systems with Certified Emission Reductions (CERs). CERs are derived from official clean energy projects which come under the UNFCCC (United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change).

When you commit to neutralising your unavoidable carbon emissions for the year, you can get certified with evidence that every printed page on your production printing system has been carbon balanced with CERs. You can then promote the actions you are taking towards a more sustainable printing approach to existing and new customers or stakeholders.

Learn about Ricoh’s Carbon Balanced Printing Programme, which has been verified by the British Standards Institution (BSI).

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