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Welcome to the second issue of Securing the Future, a periodic e-newsletter from Shred-it, an international document destruction company. In this issue, we’ll explore the relationship between business and the environment.
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It’s no surprise that individuals, communities and governments have all come to realize that our social and economic future depends on our ability to build and sustain a “green” society. Business leaders now view environmentally-sustainable processes as not only the right thing to do, but also good business practice.
In a tough economy, environmental sustainability may take a back seat in business, succumbing to the more immediate needs of creating efficiencies and increasing sales. But as the economy recovers, organizations that have maintained their environmental focus will be one step ahead in building their reputations as socially responsible companies.
Setting goals to become more environmentally friendly does not have to be onerous. There are simple ways to green your operations, while meeting your business objectives, and one of them – shredding and recycling all your organization’s confidential waste paper – is the focus of this newsletter.
“If you add up these numbers, the overall waste – 624 milllion tonnes – is equal to 1,700 Empire State Buildings, and much of this amount is non-residential waste created by businesses and industry,” says Michael Skidmore, Chief Security Officer, “This is a truly staggering amount of waste.”
While different organizations have different environmental values, philosophies and practices, many of them recycle paper – one of the easiest and most common ways to improve a company’s environmental performance. However, not all organizations realize that they also have to think about the security of the documents they put into the recycling bins. Paper waste left in recycling bins for pick-up by local municipalities and garbage contractors may leave organizations at risk of security breaches and potentially cause identity theft and fraud.
Without an integrated recycling and security process, even those documents that have been ripped and torn may lead to serious privacy and security problems. Such documents are vulnerable to being mishandled, lost or stolen.
Compromised information, no matter how small, can, in turn, lead to expensive litigation, damaged reputation and a loss of customer trust. Not only is there a more secure way to handle paper waste, but there’s a greener way, too.
For Shred-it, which has been focusing on environmental sustainability since the company’s inception in 1988, meeting the needs of its customers and helping them reduce their negative environmental footprint has always been a top priority. All the paper Shred-it securely destroys is collected, securely destroyed, baled in confetti form and then recycled, eventually turning into consumer items, such as paper towels and paper plates.
In fact, when organizations use Shred-it’s document destruction services, they save one tree through the recycling process every time they fill two Shred-it secure document containers with paper. In this way, Shred-it can easily measure how many trees each client is saving annually, helping organizations achieve their environmental goals and reduce their negative environmental impact. The company also gives customers an Environmental Certificate each year, which notes how many trees they have saved.
Shred-it works hard to ensure it is minimizing its impact on the environment in other ways. One of them is making its truck fleet more environmentally friendly through technologies that help reduce emissions and fuel consumption. A critical component of the company’s daily operations, Shred-it’s truck fleet uses only recyclable, biodegradable hydraulic fluids, and all its truck motors meet or exceed North American, U.K. and European emission regulatory standards.
Greening its fleet is an ongoing process for Shred-it. As part of this evolution, Shred-it has already started piloting smaller, more fuel-efficient trucks and auto shut-down technology to further reduce emissions. A new, fuel-efficient mid-size truck, fitted with auto-down technology, will emit 55 per cent fewer metric tons of CO2. Looking towards the future, Shred-it is also exploring hybrid and electric truck opportunities.
But with all environmental changes made to Shred-it’s operations, the company’s high security standards continue to be its primary focus. Shred-it’s customers get the best of both worlds, protecting their information from being compromised while improving their environmental record.
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