A clean and clear business case

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A clean and clear business case

10:42 03 May in Misc

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Not so long ago there was a time when CFCs, greenhouse gases, aerosols and the ozone layer were the talk of the town. Discussions about the damaging properties of ozone depleting substances were never far from the headlines as research revealed just how damaging those nasty chemicals really are. While today’s environmental focus has shifted somewhat, most recently to diesel engine emissions, the need for ozone free products is still as acute as ever.

2017 marks the 30th anniversary of the Montreal Protocol, a landmark international agreement signed by 191 countries that had the goal of phasing out the production and use of CFCs and other ozone depleting chemicals. And while it worked with the likes of aerosols, there are still everyday products emitting harmful ozone – including printers.

Ozone Free

The good news is that there is another way! Technology created by KYOCERA Document Solutions, as part of its wider commitment to be as environmentally-friendly as possible, has resulted in an ozone free printer.

Essentially – and without getting too technical – by applying a positive electrical charge directly to the print rollers, KYOCERA has eliminated the production of ozone. Most printers still use negatively-charged rollers, which generates the harmful gas.

It’s well known that ozone is a greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming, but less well known but just as important in an office environment is the fact that ground level ozone is an air pollutant. In an enclosed space, ozone produced by laser printers can cause irritation of the eyes and respiratory system, leading to breathing difficulties in some cases.

Further enhancements

The ozone free solution is just one part of KYOCERA’s drive to deliver printing that’s as sustainable as possible via its ‘ECOSYS – Sustainable By Design’ initiatives that include numerous technologies that reduce toner consumption and the use of disposable parts. Coincidentally, 2017 is also a special year for ECOSYS, as it marks 25 years since the first devices rolled off the production line, perfectly timed to coincide with the Rio Earth Summit that changed global thinking on climate change.

ECOSYS developments since 1982 have been far reaching. For example, most print devices usually need a complex toner cartridge, containing the photoconductor drum and peripheral parts, to be replaced every few thousand pages. That’s wasteful, so KYOCERA has developed a toner only concept where the drum is so reliable it’s built into the device rather than being a disposable consumable part. ECOSYS devices are also waste toner box free, with the waste toner collected in the drum unit. That means the only items to be disposed of are an empty toner container and residue bottle, which again are made of plastic, identified for easy recycling.

Many of these advancements stem from KYOCERA’s ongoing Lifecycle Assessment, which analyses the negative environmental impact of each product at various stages of its life and prompts R&D to find ways to improve things. In a nutshell it’s about being environmentally innovative.

Rather than talk about the full gamut of KYOCERA’s ECOSYS initiatives here, more information can be found on our web page.

Sustainability equals workplace efficiency

As well as the environmental benefits, sustainable design brings additional workplace benefits. Fewer replacement parts and the use of smaller toner particles that require less energy for fusing are just two examples of how KYOCERA can deliver devices that have some of the lowest total costs of ownership (TCO) in their class. What’s more, long-life parts and toner that needs replacing far less often than on most laser printers (a single cassette of KYOCERA toner will print up to 20,000 pages), reduce downtime and hours wasted finding and then replacing cassettes.

Much is said about the need to protect our environment – on a local and global scale – but all too often compromises need to be made between benefits, costs and efficiencies. A solution like ECOSYS, which does it all by minimising environmental impact, efficiency and cost, must be the way forward for organisations everywhere.

Austin Clark

Austin Clark

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