Sustainable products, facilities help Xerox save money, resources
Life cycle product management, substantial reductions in waste and consumption of energy and water, and a strengthened commitment to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are among the highlights of Xerox's recently-released 2005 Environment, Health and Safety Progress Report.
"Sustainable operations is a demanding goal but one that will ultimately more than repay our efforts. We have demonstrated that you actually can save money by investing in environmentally sound technologies and business practices," said Patricia Calkins, the company's vice-president of environment, health and safety.
The company's strategy for pursuing sustainability is summed up in its goal of delivering "waste-free products from waste-free facilities." This means addressing the entire product life cycle, from selecting raw materials to integrating product features that enable small offices, large enterprises and commercial print operations worldwide to carry out their operations in an environmentally sound manner. It includes sourcing paper from environmentally sound suppliers, designing equipment with parts and subsystems that can be re-used, and eliminating hazardous substances in products.
The report cites a number of notable achievements to this end:
-97% of eligible new Xerox products met the requirements of the international Energy Star(r) and Canada's Environmental Choice programs. By selling Energy Star products and re-using parts in Xerox remanufacturing operations, the company achieved energy savings equivalent to 1.4 million megawatt-hours of electricity in 2004.
-Improvements in energy efficiency enabled Xerox to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by nearly 6% between 2002 and 2004, while energy consumption decreased by 3%.
-All new products met Xerox's rigorous standards for minimal use of hazardous materials and noise, ozone and dust emissions, as well as all applicable regulatory limits.
-In 2005, the company launched its first office products - such as the WorkCentre M118/M118i basic multifunction systems - designed to meet the requirements of the European Union directive restricting the use of hazardous substances (RoHS), which takes effect in July 2006.
-Re-use and recycling of Xerox equipment and supplies in 2004 kept 142 million pounds of material from entering landfills. End-of-life strategies have resulted in the diversion of more than 1.6 billion pounds of waste from landfills since 1991. Over the past 15 years, this program has given new life to the equivalent of 2.5 million copiers, printers and multifunction systems.
-96% of returned parts ineligible for reuse were successfully recycled by Xerox's worldwide equipment recovery and recycling operations.
-At Xerox facilities, 95% or more of hazardous wastes have been managed beneficially since 1999 through treatment, recycling or fuels blending, while the recycling rate for nonhazardous solid waste has risen from 56% to 89% since 1999.
-Water use has declined by 31% since 1999, while air emissions from facilities producing Xerox's imaging supplies have declined by 91% since 1991 (these are the company's most chemical-intensive operations).
The report further notes that Xerox products are designed to help customers meet their own sustainability objectives. For example, equipment is energy-efficient and includes features for automatic two-sided printing to conserve paper. Toner cartridges and other supplies are designed for recycling. And Xerox-exclusive technologies such as solid ink generate 95% less waste than comparable laser printers.
Notable new products include the WorkCentre(r) C2424, Xerox's first office colour multifunction system to offer the benefits of solid ink, and Xerox Nuvera(tm) digital production systems, incorporating innovative technologies designed to make machine components last longer and scan pages with low-power, mercury-free lamps. The company's Premium Laser paper was among the papers redesigned to add 30% recycled content.
Calkins said Xerox is continuing to pursue a number of important goals, including a pledge announced earlier this year to reduce absolute greenhouse gas emissions by 10% from 2002 to 2012 and an initiative to further control chemicals used in its products.
The 11th annual Progress Report may be viewed on the Xerox Web site, www.xerox.com/environment. More information is also available from Wende Knapp at Xerox Canada, 416/733-6050, E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.