For What It’s Earth: The Environmental Impact of Shredding

Recycling Impact of Shredding

The national theme for this past Earth Day, April 22, 2021, was “Restore Our Earth”, with a focus on natural processes, emerging green technologies, and innovative thinking that can restore the world’s ecosystems. At Secure Records Solutions, we identify with this theme as one of our core values is innovation.  When we approach complex problems in the document management industry, we truly believe old problems need new thinking. And the same solutions that got us to where we are today, will not carry us into the future.

COO and partner Christopher Jones has written about this topic and authored several others related to environmental sustainability through his personal passion and leadership role in the region through his roles with I-GEL and the Georgia Chamber.

SRS Sustainability Report 2020As Earth Month comes to an end, we’re intensifying our commitment to sustainability by outlining specific goals for our organization over the next ten years through our first-ever Sustainability Report. We’re also excited to celebrate the progress we’ve made and share that with our clients, colleagues, and friends.

An obvious measure of our focus on sustainability is our recycling program – through which we recycle millions of pounds of shredded paper, cardboard, and electronics each year.  As we’ve written about before, there’s a significant individual impact of properly shredding and recycling paper in your office.  Because hundreds of clients have trusted this service to us, in 2020 we were able to recycle 2.6 million pounds of paper, 80,000 pounds of cardboard, and 20,000 pounds of electronics. That equates to:

  • 7,380,279 pounds of wood saved (Equivalent to: 22,163 saved trees)
  • 495,417 gallons of oil (Equivalent to: enough electricity to power the average American household for 15 years)
  • 3,911 cubic yards of landfill space (Greenhouse gas emissions from landfills are 28 times more potent than carbon dioxide, a leading contributor to global warming)
  • 5,214,916 kilowatts of energy (Equivalent to: powering 482 homes for a year)
  • 9,126,103 gallons of wastewater not produced (Equivalent to: 13.3 Olympic swimming pools of water)
  • 2,513 metric tons of CO2 emissions not produced (Equivalent to: taking 1,889 cars off the road in one year)*

*Burning the same amount of paper would create 887 metric tons of carbon dioxide.

The environmental impact of recycling is no small feat, and we hope you enjoy reading about what we’ve accomplished together over the last several years.

Milestones matter – and we’re delighted to report them – but we know that’s not enough. As the old proverb says, “We do not inherit the Earth from our ancestors, we borrow it from our children.” As cited on EARTHDAY.ORG, “It is up to each and every one of us to #RestoreOurEarth not just because we care about the natural world, but because we live on it. And we all need a healthy Earth to support our jobs, livelihoods, health, survival, and happiness.” We hope you’ll join us in the commitment to #RestoreOurEarth by holding us accountable to the goals outlined in our 2020 report. We look forward to updating you on our progress each year, coinciding with Earth Day celebrated in April.

Read the complete report: SRS Sustainability Report 2020


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