How To Go Green: Office Edition

There are tons of ways to green your office at no cost to you. And let’s face it, with the holidays looming, who isn’t looking to save money right now? We’ve compiled a list of 5 tips below. Following even just a few can make a difference – not just for the environment but for your wallet as well!

1. Print Responsibly.
Start by evaluating everything you print on a daily basis. Are you only printing what you need? Are you using recycled paper? It’s amazing how much useless information we all print, but the first step is to take it all into account and remember to print only what we need and use recycled substrates whenever possible.

2. Go Vinyl Free.
Take a look around your office right now and gather everything that contains some sort of vinyl (binders, folders, reports, etc.). Not only is vinyl almost impossible to recycle, it can also be harmful to your health. Did you know there’s a better option? Reduce your dependence on vinyl and Go Low-Carb today.  

3. Bring reusable utensils and packaging.
No need to use disposable cutlery when you can easily bring your own silverware for lunch. It’s much better for the environment and more cost-effective than using disposable. The same goes for the way you package your lunch. Choose reusable lunch bags over paper and aluminum water bottles over plastic and feel good about reducing your carbon footprint.

4. Install energy efficient lightbulbs.
This is probably one of the easier tips to pull off, if you haven’t already. It’s a win for everyone, your boss will save money on the electric bill and you can feel better about reducing your energy consumption.

5. Turn off all computers and lights.
At the end of the day (or anytime you know you will be out of your office for an extended period of time), make sure to turn off your computer and lights. Every little bit helps and you wouldn’t believe how much energy and carbon emissions you can save by remembering to do this daily.

Is there anything we missed? Share with us below how you gave your office (or home, bedroom, etc.) the green treatment!

Visit TreeHugger.com for a plethora of resources on going green.

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Are you melting yet? Your PVC isn’t…

This time of year always begs the question: Is it hot enough for you? It’s the time of year when most people start to daydream about the lower temperatures and beautiful scenery that Fall brings. For some, conscious choices are made every day to ensure this natural beauty is maintained. For others, these are things that are taken for granted.

There are many environmentally harmful products out there that will neither help our planet nor us in the long run. PVC, commonly known as vinyl, is one of those products. It is used nearly every day in many facets of daily life, but are we really aware how harmful this chemically producing plastic is?

Here are some major concerns:

PVC is not typically recycled or recyclable and it is not biodegradable. Chlorine production for PVC results in the release of more than 200,000 pounds of mercury into air, water and land each year.

In addition, various pollutants and toxic additives are used to produce PVC products.

Two of the main culprits are:

1. Dioxin
2. Phthalates

  • Dioxin is a toxic chemical that is created and released during PVC production. Since PVC is expensive and difficult to recycle, it is typically burned or buried at end of life – this releases even more dioxin (and hydrochloric acid) into the air which can contaminate water and land and even contributes to acid rain. Dioxin can also negatively affect reproductive, immune, endocrine and neurological systems.
  • Phthalates are additives used in PVC production that help soften and make it flexible for use in various applications. Over the years, phthalates have sparked concern from many due to the link between this dangerous additive and increased risk of cancer, kidney and liver damage as well as damage to reproductive health and development.

Remind me again why we use this product so much?

Not only does PVC use dangerous chemicals in production, it is also difficult to recycle (as mentioned above). Because of this, a large majority ends up in landfills where it does not easily decompose, releasing its toxic chemicals into the air for us to freely breathe in – yippee.

After everything we know about the harmful effects of PVC not only on the environment but also on ourselves, we really need to ask this question: Is PVC worth the risk? I understand for some of its uses it is the most effective option, but with all of the environmentally friendly options that are available (from binders to notebooks), why are we still using vinyl in so many aspects of our lives?

Take a stand. Go Vinyl Free.

Source: http://earth911.com/recycling/plastic/pvc/facts-about-pvc/

How Serious Are You About Sustainability?

Traditional binders are made of multiple pieces of vinyl and PVC – some of the most environmentally harmful plastics. Sealed together with a heat press, the assembly of traditional binders makes recycling nearly impossible. As a result, most (if not all) vinyl binders end up in landfills.

Simply changing binder usage can have a significant impact on the environment.

Made of 98% recycled material, vinyl free and designed to be easily taken apart for recycling, the Low-Carb Binder immediately reduces your company’s carbon footprint. With prices comparable to vinyl binders, the Low-Carb Binder can help your company reach its sustainability goals with no investment or added cost.  

Take the first step. Go Vinyl Free.

Where does your vinyl go?

Binders are used every day by businesses of all sizes. They typically are used until they begin to fall apart at which point they are no longer useful. When the vinyl cracks or rips or the rings lose strength, it’s time to replace your binder – so what do you do with the old one? Most likely you toss it in your office wastebasket, not thinking about the ramifications of that action. When vinyl binders are thrown into a regular wastebasket, they will end up in a landfill. Since PVC is known to be one of the “worst” plastics for the environment and is not biodegradable, those vinyl binders will sit in that landfill, causing environmental damage for years to come.

Of course there is the alternative to recycle your vinyl binder, but have you ever tried? It would include a laborious process of ripping vinyl off three (yes, three) separate pieces of cardboard, and attempting to remove metal rings which were riveted with a machine (i.e. not intended for removal). And then the question arises of what to do with the vinyl once you’ve removed it. Who has the time, energy or patience to do that?

Vinyl binders are harmful to the environment and difficult to recycle and until now they were the only option for looseleaf paperwork or presentations.

Enter the Low-Carb Binder™.

The Low-Carb Binder is an innovative product that simplifies not only the production process of binders, but perhaps more importantly, the recycling process. Made of 100% recycled chipboard and recyclable metal rings that can be attached upon receipt, the Low-Carb Binder changes the face of binders forever. They ship flat, are designed for easy disposal and can be customized to fit any brand with unique (and eco-friendly) spine wraps and labels. And you’re not sacrificing quality – Low-Carb Binders are just as durable as those harmful vinyl binders you’re currently using. See for yourself. Order a sample.

Reduce your carbon footprint. Go Low-Carb today.

Go Vinyl Free in 2010

Binders are used every day by businesses of all sizes. Traditional binders are made of cardboard covered in vinyl (which, may I remind you, is known to be one of the worst plastics for the environment) with a plastic overlay and metal rings permanently attached. Overall they are very inefficient, harmful to the environment and almost impossible to recycle.

With all of the environmentally friendly options available, there is no better time to go vinyl free and invest in recycled and fully recyclable binders. Making the switch from vinyl to recycled binders will immediately reduce your company’s carbon footprint and result in no added implementation cost.

When determining which route to take, always take into account these guidelines: Reduce, Reuse, Renew.  

  • Reduce
    The recycled binder you choose to use should contain no vinyl or polyvinyl chloride (clear plastic); instead it should be made from recycled chipboard.
  • Reuse
    Look for a high content of PCW (post-consumer waste) and ensure the binder is fully recyclable. Most importantly, make sure the rings are designed to be easily removed for simple recycling (many are not!)
  • Renew
    Does the company that makes your binders operate on wind power or renewable energy? Do they provide carbon neutral shipping?

Green Books N Binders does all this and more. Our patent-pending Low-Carb Binder is made from 98% recycled material and contains recycled metal rings that can easily be removed for quick disposal.

Low-Carb Binders are available in two unique designs:

1. Low-Carb Original Ships flat with recycled metal rings that can be attached upon receipt with a snap-in fastener.

2. Low-Carb Ready – Ships assembled with removable rivets that can be unscrewed for easy recycling.

There are many add-ons to choose from as well.

Recycled tabs can be ordered blank, or printed black & white or full-color. The print area ranges anywhere from tab to full-bleed.

Pockets and half folders are also available. Pockets come slotted on one side for business cards and on the other for CD/DVDs.

Recycled labels come blank with any order of Low-Carb Binders. They can be custom printed and attached prior to receipt.

The Low-Carb Binder is fully recyclable and is designed to be easily taken apart. It is the perfect solution for all of your archival and communication needs, both internally and externally. If you’re looking to reduce your carbon footprint (and who isn’t?), go vinyl free in 2010 with the Low-Carb Binder; your customers will thank you for it!

Download the Low-Carb Brochure.

Request more information.