According to a iDatix infographic, over 71M tons of paper are used every year. This number is equivalent to the average weight of 9 million elephants!
The push to preserve the environment is not simply a personal pursuit. Around the country, businesses both small and large are making changes to limit their energy consumption and waste. Creative managers are instituting policies in their companies that are being shared and adopted by other institutions.
One of the most effective ways for businesses to go green is to practice conservation in their offices. Many of these environmental initiatives are tried and true tactics, such as turning lights and computers off when they are not in use and switching to eco-friendly paper products and office supplies.
However, there are also a few more modern ways businesses are finding can help reduce their carbon footprint. As technology becomes more ubiquitous and powerful, many companies are discovering that by embracing the latest changes, they are lessening their negative effects on the natural world.
Cloud computing has made a substantial and positive impact on the environment. This increasingly popular method for external data storage and software hosting allows businesses to significantly cut back on the waste their offices produce in many ways. As the technology matures and spreads, many companies are finding previously unimagined ways to go green, including cloud-based document editing, employing online faxing to manage communications and allowing employees to work from home to reduce transportation and office energy consumption.
In a similar vein, many companies are adopting internet faxing by computer as a way of limiting the amount of fax-related debris they generate. A fax to email service allows companies to send and receive faxes from computers, tablets and smartphones. Not only does this mean they don't need to print out every transmission - many businesses find that a significant portion of the faxes they receive are inessential - but they can also cut back considerably on toner and ink use.
Using the cloud to share documents instead of relying on paper copies, can help companies drastically lower the amount paper they consume. Memos and reports that were traditionally printed for each worker can now be disseminated easily and effectively through the cloud. This means that employees can make edits, exchange thoughts and solicit responses without going through a ream of paper in the process. (note: some online fax providers, like eFax, enable unlimited storage of, and access to, files in the cloud.
Out of the office
Another environmental benefit of cloud computing -- allowing a businesses to decentralize. If employees can complete much of their work out of the office, it means they can occasionally work from home - reducing the amount of fuel their vehicles consume in transit.
By focusing on these three measures, many businesses are finding they can stay productive and efficient while also reducing the harm they cause to the environment.