Dear Friends and Colleagues,

For phase three of our Digital Cleanup, we’re focusing on reducing our printing habits.

Here is today’s challenge: See how significantly you can reduce your printing – no-printing days? – for the duration of the challenge.

Small changes in our printing habits can have a big impact on the environment. Here are a few tips to reduce your printing all year long:

  • Ask yourself each time whether it is absolutely necessary to have a hard copy.
  • Change the spacing (from double to single spacing) and the margin (from normal to narrow) to lower the number of pages.
  • Print double-sided and consider printing 2 pages per side.
  • Use digital signatures instead of printing and signing documents.
  • Share documents electronically instead of printing and distributing hard copies.

Think twice before printing a document. Printers consume a lot of energy: around 30 to 50 watts in sleeping mode and between 300 and 500 watts when printing (10 times more). Of course, paper and ink waste are also a crucial issue! According to ADEME, with 60 to 75 kilograms consumed per year and per employee, paper is the leading office consumable.

Some key resources:

  • How much electricity does a printer use? Electric Rate, 2023.
  • Degirmenci, K., & Recker, J. (2018). Creating environmental sensemaking through green IS: an experimental study on eco-nudging paper printing behavior.
  • Aydemir, C., & Özsoy, S. A. (2020). Environmental impact of printing inks and printing process. Journal of graphic engineering and design, 11(2), 11-17.

Stay tuned for our next email and our next activity.

Annelie, Grant, Papa and Tamara
The Virtual Institute Organizing Committee