Despite our world going digital, the reality is paper is still an essential component of daily life in the workplace. No matter how much we try to eliminate it, we’re definitely not anywhere close to a truly paperless office yet. That being the case, it makes good business sense for companies to make an effort to recycle their office supplies, including used toner cartridges from their printers. Recycling them is cost-efficient, promotes environmental causes, and eliminates waste. Here are some of the reasons why your office should recycle its used toner cartridges.
All pros, no cons
Aside from the challenges often associated with committing to change, there are really no downsides to recycling. Cartridges can be recycled and made into remanufactured products for reuse, eliminating waste. With each cartridge that is recycled, about 2.5 pounds of metal and plastic is kept out of landfills; it also conserves up to a gallon of oil that would otherwise be required to create a new cartridge.
Many manufacturing companies offer return programs to help reduce our carbon footprint. Companies that return their cartridges can purchase recycled ones at a discounted rate—organizations find they can often save anywhere between 15 – 45 percent on these cartridges. Some places will even give companies cash in exchange for old cartridges.
Reduces greenhouse gases
Like most things, the production of new toner cartridges releases carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. As such, recycling cartridges will lower the number of new ones manufactured and carbon dioxide emissions released. Not to mention, the materials used in toner cartridges don’t decompose for about 1,000 years. Big businesses obviously can do a lot of environmental damage if they don’t recycle, but even smaller companies can cause harm.
Decreases the burden on landfills
More than 95 percent of the materials used to create toner cartridges can be recycled, which means a lot less waste going into landfills as more businesses commit to recycling initiatives. Also, consider that even small amounts of recycled cartridges reduce the number of hazardous materials that are used to make these and similar products. Recycling also decreases the amounts of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) flowing into the ground and eventually making its way to water supplies.
According to Environmental Protection, an online resource dedicated to good environmental practices, approximately 700,000 ink and toner cartridges are tossed out every single day in the United States alone. That number is staggering. By committing to recycling, even small businesses can make a big difference towards safeguarding our planet.
Golden Gate Office Solutions is proud to do our part by participating in the Close the Loop recycling program for office technology consumables. If you’d like to learn more about this program or other ways your company can enjoy the benefits associated with recycling, contact us today to speak to one of our sustainability experts.