Innovations for Sustainability
Recycling is important, right? We know it. We all feel a tinge of shame when we use plastic bags at the grocery store. We are conscientious about how we handle our trash at home, and recycle what we can. We make choices about using ceramic coffee mugs instead of disposable ones, and we use tea towels instead of paper. But no matter how valiant our efforts may be at home, it’s important for us to carry that into our work lives as well. Office managers and business owners must also go the extra mile to be aware of how the way they do business impacts the Earth. So let’s take a look at a few international companies that are practicing sustainability with their creative recycling programs.
Old Markers, New Fuel
Start em young! Crayola is using their innovative approach to recycling with their program ColorCycle. This program reuses old art supplies to teach children about how important it is to recycle. ColorCycle invites any K-12 school to participate in their project by collecting old Crayola markers, and sending them back to the company with provided pre-paid shipping labels. There is no cost to the schools for participating. Once they receive the discarded markers, Crayola transforms them into a clean-burning fuel. The company has also developed lesson plans available to program participants to help teach kids the fundamentals of recycling and sustainability.
Recycle Your Dell
In an effort to reduce the adverse effects of e-waste, Dell has implemented a program that allows customers to easily recycle old, unwanted electronic items in an environmentally friendly way. The company accepts any and all Dell-branded items, and event accepts non-Dell electronics for customers who buy new Dell products. They too provide free shipping labels so items can be mailed to them directly, and they even have a partnership with Goodwill, so that people can make easy drop offs at Goodwill stores.
Dell’s sustainability efforts don’t end there, folks. They also have a program for recycling discarded printer supplies and old printer cartridges for proper disposal. Did you know one ink or toner cartridge takes upwards of 1,000 years to decompose? You can recycle those Dell cartridges for free through their program.
Estee Lauder’s Sustainability Efforts
Another global brand known for its efforts in sustainability is Estee Lauder. Estee Lauder has a Global Environmental and Safety team with a long history of working to minimize waste, and identify new ways to improve recovery and diversion of landfill-fated items. The company owns 23 manufacturing and distributing facilities that, since 2003, have sent zero waste to landfills. Any waste that cannot be recycled is incinerated and transformed into energy. The company is currently on track to meet its sustainability goals of achieving Net Zero carbon emissions and for sourcing 100% renewable energy by the end of the year. In 2019, they continued to operate in strategic ways to mitigate climate change, incorporating solar power and wind energy into their processes.
Levi’s is yet another company making great strides toward sustainability. Levi’s has partnered with Cotton® in effort to breathe new life into worn, discarded blue jeans. Denim is a sturdy fabric, fashioned to withstand a good deal of wear, but not only is it durable, it’s also recyclable. So in effort to keep cast aside blue jeans out of landfills, Levi’s and Cotton have joined forces in the Blue Jeans Go Green initiative to inspire people to recycle their denim. Levi’s stores now feature recycling boxes where you can drop off denim by any brand for reuse or recycling. Recycled jeans often are turned into materials used for building insulation– some of which will be focused within community-oriented builds such as libraries, schools, and hospitals. To top it all off, Levi’s will give you a coupon for 20% off a single item when you bring in denim to recycle.
Much like these companies, iSustain is committed to sustainability, and helping other businesses implement recycling processes that benefit them as well as the environment as a whole. Wanna know more about iSustain? Get in touch! We’d love to chat with you.