20 April 2011

Microsoft headquarters to use 100 percent recycled paper

In a bold move, technological magnate Microsoft announced yesterday it will switch to using only 100% post-consumer recycled printing paper in all its Puget Sound locations. The switch will begin as quick as April 22nd (this Friday, which also coincides with Earth Day), and will over time replace the company's current supply of 30% post-consumer recycled paper. The company believes this move will save over 8,000 trees a year.

"Although we have always encouraged our employees to use paper resources efficiently and limit waste, this alliance enables us to conserve resources and reduce waste at a larger, corporate scale while at the same time allowing us to invest in our local economy," said Rob Bernard, chief environmental strategist, Microsoft.

The paper will be supplied by Grays Harbor Paper, a locally-owned company in the Puget Sound area. The company has become renowned as a producer of environmentally-friendly materials. The paper company expects that, with this move, Microsoft will also save about 5 Olympic-sized swimming pools full of water.

The paper switch provides multiple positive results: in addition to being kind to the environment by not using chlorine during the chemical process, Patrick Quigg, Grays Harbor Paper's president, says that this "...alliance [will] raise revenue and create jobs, [and] it will help drive awareness that the products a company uses on a day-to-day basis don't have to be in conflict with overall sustainability goals."

The switch to the environmentally-friendly, Green-e certified paper is slated to hit all national Microsoft offices within three months. More information about Microsoft's environmental policies can be found here. Information about Grays Harbor can be found here.

Geanna Marek | @greenvegnliving
Geanna has been a vegan for over 3 years. She lives in the very veg-friendly city of Portland, Oregon, where she works as a freelance writer and library assistant. She is also currently training to run the Portland Marathon this fall. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time outdoors, reading, eating, and traveling. Find Geanna at greenveganliving.com.

Photo credit: cc: flickr.com/photos/cloudsoup