by Jesse Gilbert
(Berkeley, CA, USA)
Our environment plays an important role in the future, so it is important that we do everything that we can to protect it. More and more, corporations and private citizens have come to realize just how important
it is to build sustainable homes, sustainable workspaces, and sustainable lifestyles.
As part of this process many businesses and individual citizens have realized that there are environmentally-friendly practices they can adopt to help protect the environment in a positive way.
One such process that helps protect and sustain the environment is document shredding. Many people think of document shredding in terms of protecting their identity and that of their clients. While document shredding has many identity implications, it also has implications with
regard to environmental protections and sustainability.
In today’s economy, the environment is often not the first consideration in business. More businesses are concerned with saving money as their top priority, and running an efficient business. Increasing sales is another
key area of interest.
However building a reputation as a sustainable business can actually increase sales. More and more businesses are realizing the profitability of becoming an environmentally friendly business.
Document shredding is one way to market a business as environmentally friendly and sustainable. How so? Consider these figures published by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency or EPA:
In the U.S. over 250 million tons of waste or just under 5 pounds of paper-related garbage is produced every day by each individual. This will go to landfills where the garbage simply piles up.
In Canada every person produces approximately 1 ton of paper and related garbage, and this figure is rising. Much of this comes from commercial sources.
In Britain, studies from the Department for the Environment suggests that commercial businesses produce over 300 million tons of paper-waste.
The good news is that despite all of this waste, many businesses are committed to paper recycling. This is an ideal way to protect the environment, and a simple way to improve sustainability.
Unfortunately simply recycling paper by leaving it in bins for other agencies to pick up and recycle poses a risk for many businesses.
Important information may be left behind on papers that are not recycled properly. There are papers that may not be handled properly when left for municipalities or garbage handlers to recycle. These papers may be stolen
and used for identity theft which has become a serious problem throughout the globe.
Any personal information that a company handles that is lost or stolen and misused can lead to serious suits and money lost associated with litigation against the company.
Document Shredding For Security and Environmental Sustainability
One of the primary motives for companies to shred paper is security. This is a smart move that may dramatically improve a business’s paper reduction processes.
There are a number of companies however, that not only practice document shredding and document destruction, but also environmental sustainability.
The environmental impact of document shredding is tremendous. When documents are shred rather than simply recycled, they can be re-used in many ways.
For example, shred paper can be turned into many different consumer goods, including paper plates and towels. This is an example of the environment impact of document shredding. Not only are documents shredded, but they
are then transformed and re-used for other purposes. This is recycling at its best. This saves the environment by saving the number of trees that might otherwise be destroyed to be used for the purposes of also making
paper goods that could just as easily have been made from shred paper.
Organizations that participate in environmental sustainability can dramatically reduce the negative impact of waste on the environment, save trees and promote positive recycling as well as secure their documents and
control breaches. This is document shredding and environmental sustainability at its best.
Jesse Gilbert is the publisher at document-shredding.org
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