The Department's current Green Impact Excellence project is aiming to reduce the amount of printing and stationery used within the Department. Tips on actions we can take to achieve this can be found below:
Tips to reduce printing
- Sending documents through the post is costly and resource intensive due to the envelopes, paper and printing energy that it requires. Scanning in documents to email out instead will reduce these costs. Refer to the IT Services FAQs for more information on scanning.
- Paper use can be reduced by simply emailing hand-outs, agendas, previous minutes and papers to meeting attendees rather than printing everyone copies. Many teams use projector facilities within meeting rooms or Google Apps to ensure everyone has access to relevant information throughout the meeting. See Training for Collaborative Working In terms of cost, if you're printing three or more sheets it is cheaper to power a pc and projector for an hour than to print meeting hand-outs!
- Similarly, many staff and students now use tablets and other portable devices making paper copies redundant.
- In 2009, departments in a number of the universities were significantly over ordering publications causing them to have to dispose of, or recycle, large quantities of unused publications. Producing publications uses significant quantities of energy and resources and over ordering should be avoided. Student publications can be made available online with hard copies only being provided on request, and online versions of most documents enable easier updating and significantly reduce paper and resource use as well as cost.
- The use of electronic submissions can reduce the amount of paper used. The University promotes the use of the VLE (Virtual Learning Environment) for electronic submission. Visit the VLE support page for guidance on this. The Qualtrics Survey Tool also allows module feedback online without the need for printing.
- Sending e-cards during the festive season can reduce waste and reduce our use of natural resources, sending charity cards also raises vital funds for those in need. It's a nice idea, if sending e-cards, to donate the money you would have spent on cards to a charity.
- Instead of buying Post-it notes you can use Sticky Notes electronically on the PC or the Tasks, Keep or Reminders/Calendar functions in Google. Keeping data electronic also stops the wrong people from reading it.
- Use reusable internal envelopes rather than single use envelopes when sending internal mail.
Tips to reduce stationery and procurement orders
- A4 paper printed on one side only can be reused internally before recycling. Some children's playgroups for example also collect scrap paper to be re-used. This paper could also be used for notes instead of buying more post-its. NB: Confidential items should be shredded rather than reused.
- No space for collection point? The Nursery, the Careers team and the Biology Infrastructure would love your reusable paper! Email: firstname.lastname@example.org (Campus Nursery), email@example.com (Biology Dept) or firstname.lastname@example.org (Careers)
- Paper catalogues are largely unnecessary and waste resources and postage. Removing yourself from unwanted junk can save over 14kg of CO2/year.
- Before disposing of any surplus equipment or furniture teams should advertise it on the WarpIt re-use system, or view it for suitable items before purchasing new items. See Warpit site.
- As well as increasing recycling levels at the University we are also aiming to reduce the amount of waste we produce. Many products are over packaged by suppliers. As customers, we have a good opportunity to encourage suppliers to reduce packaging waste rather than just accepting it.
- Tens of millions of envelopes are sent to landfill each year because they contain plastic windows. While these can be recycled through some recycling schemes, some schemes do not accept them. For departments that organise large mailings biodegradable poly-wrap is now widely available.