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Print Is Sustainable

by Canon

In today’s world print sometimes unfairly gets the reputation of not being a sustainable communication method. At Canon, we are working to help change the narrative and provide some data that can support the sustainable story that print has to tell. So what can you share with your customers and prospective clients when they ask about the sustainability of printing? 

Choosing Digital Printing can equate to less waste, which can help lead to more efficient and sustainable business models. Digital printing offers the ability to print only what is needed, in shorter runs than traditional offset. This leads to less waste and obsolescence as well as no need for preprinted plates, forms, or chemicals. Digital printing generally offers good de-inkability, which increases the ability to recycle printed materials. Furthermore, digital print enables targeted content which speaks directly to the recipient and can create shorter page counts by delivering only necessary content.  

Paper is a Sustainable Resource. In general, print and paper are more sustainable than most people think. Paper is a renewable resource which, with responsible forest management, is sustainable. Working forests — forests that are harvested and replanted again and again — provide a home for plants and wildlife and help to recapture carbon from the atmosphere. These working farms are actually increasing the forestland in North America. Today, more trees are grown here than are harvested every year. And once harvested trees have been turned into paper and used, that paper can be recycled.  

The combined pulp, paper and print sector are the lowest in industrial emitters at 0.8% of the global greenhouse gas emissions. Compare that to the Information & Communications Technology industry, which accounts for around 2.5-3% of global greenhouse gas emissions and this is predicted to rise to 14% by 2040.  

Canon thinks about Sustainability in the design and development of its production print line. Our product sustainability efforts begin in the product development stage. When designing presses such as our varioPRINT iX-series, our ColorStream series, and our ProStream series, we strive to create cutting-edge products that utilize a greater amount of sustainable and/or recycled materials. The products are built to last.  

Beyond design, we strive to protect the environment throughout the remainder of a product’s life cycle, utilizing energy-efficient manufacturing processes, developing energy-efficient products, and eliminating hazardous substances from our products and services wherever possible. Our inkjet presses use environmentally friendly water-based inks that contain no SVHC substances (substances of very high concern), no mineral oils, no aromatic hydrocarbons (MOAH), and no saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH). 

So many of our customers are focused on energy efficiency right now. Our inkjet presses are designed for heavy duty 24/7 operations, featuring a low energy consumption per printed page. As the low energy consumption per printed page meets the Nordic Swan requirements, some of our customers are certified with Nordic Swan Ecolabel 041. 

Canon Solutions America plants trees on behalf of its production print customers. The Canon Eco Start Program was developed as a partnership collaboration between the Production Print Solutions division of Canon Solutions America, our production print customers, and Trees for the Future. This program is designed to help our customers achieve carbon-neutral production. Furthermore, this program allows Canon Solutions America customers to take part in helping to improve the livelihood of communities, while putting trees back into the environment. 

To plant the trees, Canon Solutions America works with Trees for the Future, a Charity Navigator four-star organization. Since its inception in 1989, Trees for the Future has helped communities in five countries within Central Africa improve their livelihoods and environment by planting more than 210 million trees, sequestering 4.5 million metrics tons of CO2 from the atmosphere since 1989. 

Since the launch of the Eco Start Program, Canon Solutions America has planted more than 2.5 million trees on behalf of its customers, in Forest Gardens that provide food and income for hundreds of families who previously suffered from chronic hunger. 

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