Pitney Bowes' Waste Recycling Climbs to 14.5M Pounds

Pitney Bowes' Waste Recycling Climbs to 14.5M Pounds

Shredded paper -- Image CC licensed by Flickr user iowa_spirit_walker

Pitney Bowes Inc. recycled 14.5 million pounds of waste last year, a 6 percent increase from the year before.

Pitney Bowes, a mainstream service provider and manufacturer of software and hardware, improved its waste management by implementing a secure destruction program that recycles paper after being shredded.

It can be difficult to give shredded paper new life because the individual paper fibers can be cut too short in the shredding process, making it less viable for recycling purposes.

But companies are increasingly overcoming this hurdle. Fuji Xerox Co., for example, developed a shredder in 2006 that cuts the paper less finely than other shredders, leaving the fibers intact for better recycling options. The irregular shape left by the shredder, however, makes it difficult to reconstruct, alleviating security concerns.

As a result of its recycling efforts, Pitney Bowes estimates it avoided 26,938 metric tons of carbon dioxide emissions in 2009. In comparison, the company recycled nearly 13.7 pounds of waste in 2008, leading to a reduction in CO2 emissions of 16,147 metric tons.

Pitney Bowes reports the results to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's WasteWise program, but complete 2009 results of the company's various environmental initiatives are not yet available.

According to the company's website, its 2008 carbon footprint was 97,242 metric tons of CO2-equivalent, a 4 percent decline from the previous year. It has also significantly increased the amount of products it recycles -- nearly a 137 percent increase between 2007 and 2008.

Image CC licensed by Flickr user iowa_spirit_walker.