Earth Day Tips for Small Businesses

Grand & Toy offers simple tips that amount to big benefits for the Earth  

TORONTO, April 20 /CNW/ - Canadian office solutions provider Grand & Toy celebrates Earth Day by encouraging Canada's small and mid-sized businesses to take simple steps to reduce their environmental footprint.

"Today, most business leaders would agree that sustainability is an imperative for organizations of all sizes," says Natasha Renaud, Director, Communications and Social Responsibility, Grand & Toy. "It is important for small businesses to know they can take simple steps that are cost-efficient and effective to becoming more earth-friendly."

Great & Toy's 10 sustainability tips for SMBs offer simple, cost-efficient and easy to execute ways to do business in a more sustainable way.

  1. If it's not essential for your business to operate from a traditional "office," get rid of it. Working remotely, from your home, from your client's office or from an unassigned workstation in a local business centre, reduces not only the number of cars on the road and greenhouse gas emissions, but also office overhead and gasoline expenses.

  2. Take advantage of natural light during daytime work hours. Reduce your reliance on artificial sources of light. This saves you money by reducing your energy expenses - while cutting your energy consumption along the way. When you do need artificial light, use fluorescent and compact fluorescent light bulbs - they last longer, use less energy and cost less in the long term.

  3. Choose sustainable interiors. Ensure the furniture you buy is certified by at least one of the credible environmental certification programs: Design for Environment (DFE), ISO 14001, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), GREENGUARD or EcoLogo or Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Choose earth-friendly materials. For example, furniture partially made from soy-based foam consumes less energy and emits fewer greenhouse gas emissions during manufacturing than furniture that is petroleum-based.

  4. Consolidate your ordering practices to once a month. Order consolidation helps reduce the number of trucks on the road, greenhouse gas emissions and air pollution associated with transportation; less packaging required to ship product also means less potential waste. In addition, consolidation leads to fewer invoices to be reconciled and easier payments, freeing up more time to focus on your business.

  5. Request electronic catalogues and electronic invoicing from your suppliers. Holding your suppliers environmentally accountable will decrease the amount of paper they are using and encourage them to start thinking about their own environmental practices. Similarly, arrange for electronic payment of all your purchases through a credit or debit card, PayPal or other electronic system.

  6. Use sustainable cleaning products. Quality microfiber cloths, for example, not only pick up dust, surface residues, microscopic particles, grease and oil, but can also significantly reduce and, in some cases, completely eliminate the cleaning chemicals required for certain jobs.

  7. Equip your office washroom with touch-less towel dispensers or air dryers. This will help you further reduce your business' paper consumption.

  8. Implement a full-scale recycling and compost program. By composting leftover food and recycling paper, cardboard, glass and aluminum cans, using specially marked bins, you'll make sure your office waste is diverted from landfills and used to produce new products, such as white printer paper, paper towels, aluminum cans and glass bottles.

  9. Recycle your used ink and toner cartridges, too. Instead of throwing them away, send them to the companies collecting empty ink and toner cartridges for recycling.  This will help conserve energy and virgin materials - and, depending on the program, you can get money back for every returned cartridge.

  10. Print double-sided and use environmentally certified paper. Switching to a 50 per cent post-consumer recycled content paper will save 120 trees for every 10 skids of paper, according to the Environmental Defense Organization, and the energy saved is enough to power a house for a year. In addition, double-sided printing, on average, leads to a 30 per cent reduction of paper usage that will increase if a secure pass code printing system is implemented as well.

Grand & Toy provides a full range of sustainable business solutions for all office needs of small and medium-sized businesses.

About Grand & Toy
With a heritage that dates back to 1882, today's Grand & Toy is committed to offering sustainable solutions to Canadian business in the areas of interiors, technology, imaging and professional services, in addition to office and facility supplies. We operate one of the country's largest distribution networks serving clients coast-to-coast. Grand & Toy also demonstrates a firm commitment to corporate social responsibility through a comprehensive sustainability strategy that's manifested through numerous internal and external environmental and social outreach programs.

SOURCE Grand

For further information:

visit www.grandandtoy.com

Media Contact
MAVERICK PR
Elana Ziluk
(416) 640-5525 ex. 243
elanaz@maverickpr.com

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