Epson Exhibits at Eco-Products 2015
Epson exhibited at Eco-Products 2015, held at Tokyo Big Sight between December 10-12, 2015. The event, hosted by the Japan Environmental Management Association for Industry (JEMAI) and Nikkei Inc., is one of the largest environmental exhibitions in Japan. Here is a report from the Epson booth.
Now in its 17th year, Eco-Products has become established as Japan's largest environmental exhibition. Epson has participated since the very beginning, using the event to showcase its various initiatives to reduce environmental footprint. At this year's show, we demonstrated PaperLab, a new in-office paper recycler whose development we had announced on December 1. The booth drew a very large number of visitors.
PaperLab debuts on presentation stage
For the first session on Day 1, Epson's global President Minoru Usui presented PaperLab to representatives of more than 30 media outlets, including TV stations and newspapers. Over the course of three days, roughly 4,000 people came to witness how our technology turned used office paper into new.
With business inkjet printers that hold down both printing costs and energy consumption, Epson is dedicated to creating an environment that lets customers print with confidence. Taking things a step further, PaperLab turns previously printed paper into blank new paper in about three minutes. Customers will feel assured they are saving resources and running a closed-loop office with a very short cycle that would not have been possible in the past. Booth attendants also gave demos printing documents with Epson's managed print services, using paper that PaperLab had made just moments before.
PaperLab environmental performance
The key feature of Epson's unique Dry Fiber Technology that underlies PaperLab is that it makes new paper from old without water.*
Businesses that recycle paper typically outsource dissolving and recycling of used paper to an outside contractor. That means they need a place to store the paper, and then they need to ship it to the contractor. Businesses also need to consider if the paper shipped out contains sensitive information. If so, the company has to closely manage the paper until it is dissolved to make sure the information does not get out.
PaperLab, on the other hand, fits easily into office space as it needs no equipment to supply water. All sensitive information can be destroyed without taking used paper off site. The office becomes its own closed loop between paper consumption and papermaking. As a result, businesses can purchase less new paper and reduce CO2 emissions associated with shipping. They can even save precious water.
* A small amount of water is used to maintain a certain level of humidity inside the system.
Used ink cartridges are separated into individual materials that are recycled into plastic products like shipping containers and clothes hangers. Once again this year we collected quite a number of end-of-life ink cartridges in the collection boxes of the Ink Cartridge Satogaeri (Homecoming) Project, a recovery program run jointly by several printer manufacturers. Epson Mizube Corp., which employs many people with disabilities, sorts the collected ink cartridges by manufacturer.
In addition, our printers are designed to be easy to recycle. Our designs take into account how these products will be treated after their useful lives. This is fundamental to a recycling-based society. The recycling corner of the booth featured models that even children could take apart with ease. Our visitors dismantled them into their component materials and learned how each one is reused.
Corporate initiatives corner
Epson supports Nature's Best Photography, one of the world's leading nature-themed photo contests. In this corner we made a mini-gallery of six photo prints to illustrate Epson's environmental initiatives.
Epson booth visitors learned that PaperLab offers some unique values, namely that it is possible to completely destroy sensitive information without taking it off site and that the system needs no equipment to supply water. Visitors were impressed with the samples of paper made by PaperLab, and representatives of a wide range of industries said they look forward to seeing a commercial version. We plan to have PaperLab in commercial production in Japan in 2016. With that target in mind, Eco-Products was a great opportunity for Epson marketing, development, design, and engineering staff to hear directly from customers with a strong environmental awareness.
In 2008, Epson established Environmental Vision 2050. In our quest to achieve that vision, we look forward to creating more world-changing services and products like PaperLab that will make fundamental headway against global warming and help reduce our environmental footprint.
A video entitled Environmental conservation - Better Products for a Better Future -, is on the Epson Corporate YouTube Channel.
We hope you will take a look at this information resource, which strongly expresses Epson's concerns for the environment.
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