Some manufacturers serving the printing and publishing industries have long been heavy on the sustainability message. Ricoh and Canon for instance, both generous supporters of Verdigris, have a persistent voice, and Xerox’s is getting louder. These companies have a heavy presence in the wider office sector, so the breadth of their impacts is larger than the likes of Heidelberg, manufacturers whose interests are very sector specific.
How many times have you seen this silly message: Please consider the environment before printing this email? Even in the printing industry people put this at the bottom of their emails, which is absolutely daft. It effectively confirms an all too common and downright dangerous misconception. The implication of this type of message is that print is bad for the environment, but nothing could be further from the truth.
We all know that recycling is the way to go if we are to preserve our planet’s natural resources. But are we all fully on board with what it will cost to do so? Our concept of commercial success is profit and all too much effort goes into maximising it without necessarily appreciating that the bottom line isn’t the only line we should not cross. Perhaps it’s time for some renewed thinking on the nature of success and profitability?
One of the world’s biggest advertising agencies is BBDO, based in New York and the first ad agency to set up its own inhouse printing facility, way back in 1894. FedEx and Gillet are amongst BBDO’s clients and the company boasts some great achievements in its history. One more can be added: Cut! CO2, the Carbon Film Quote, although it’s odd that they couldn’t come up with something a little bit snappier, given their line of business.
The United Nations (UN) is even more fond of initials and acronyms than International Standards Organisation (ISO), so it is with a certain degree of weariness that we see yet another truckload heading our way. The latest, United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), is a programme that is meant to help countries to improve peoples’ quality of life without jeopardising that of generations yet to come. Lofty ideals indeed, but how can it be possible to reconcile both objectives within a single strategy?