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Duplex printing cuts carbon output, promotes ASU sustainability goals

November 28, 2011

Setting printers to duplex printing mode across Arizona State University is helping save the environment one sheet at a time.

According to an assessment done by Canon on ASU printers during fiscal year 2011, the environmental savings from duplex printing saved more than 725 trees and 2.34 million liters of water, and reduced carbon emissions by more than 74 metric tons.

Decreasing carbon emissions and saving trees and water through a simple, sustainable solution such as duplex printing is due in part through the ASU-Canon Strategic Alliance Partnership. The objective of the ASU-Canon alliance is to create a new standard in university document output by building a Sustainable Digital University™.

“We are grateful to have the support of the Canon team to help move ASU closer to our 2025 carbon-neutrality goal,” says Ray Jensen, associate vice president, University Business Services, and University Sustainability Operations officer. “In one year, we were able to take 584 printers offline across ASU, and increase the number of devices supporting duplex printing to 36 percent, up from 19 percent in 2010.”

Canon capitalizes on technology to boost its effectiveness commitment to environmental and economical sustainability. The company mapped 6,660 copiers, fax machines, printers and scanners during fall 2010 and found that 10 percent of the ASU population needs personal printers. However, that leaves 90 percent of all ASU community members the opportunity to ramp up duplex printing, curb carbon emissions and reduce water and paper waste.

To achieve less carbon output and increase green-printing tactics, the Canon team regularly conducts site evaluations and makes efficient equipment recommendations, or provides exceptions to order outside of the Sustainable Digital University™ program. The site assessments yield important metrics surrounding the local-printer ordering process, insight about how individuals are embracing the ASU-Canon Sustainable Digital University™ program, and where, if any, improvements can be made.

“Gathering this valuable data supports our 2015 ambition to reduce the number of single-function printing devices at ASU from more than 5,400 in 2011 to 450,” says Robert Lane, director of digital document services. “To help ASU realize carbon neutrality, we will continue site-based printing equipment evaluations and work with sustainability practices leaders to recalibrate and enhance our green-printing strategies.”

Learn more about the ASU-Canon Strategic Alliance Partnership and schedule site assessments by visiting