Sustainability Statement, Reporting and Policy
As a market leader in the IT Asset Disposition (ITAD) industry, EPC is dedicated to the continual improvement and expansion of our sustainability initiatives. Our efforts are focused on internal objectives and our customer centric service offerings. For over six years, our company has been certified by the ISO-14001 environmental standard. By abiding by this environmental management system, we have continuously sought out ways to improve our operations in order to protect the environment. We realize the strategies and practices of sustainability are more than just environmental stewardship, and we are working to incorporate other areas for improvement. To help us meet, measure and track our sustainability initiatives, we have formed a Green Team. This group is made up of dedicated, long-term EPC staff members that constantly look for ways to improve our sustainability. The goal of this group is to not only focus on targeted projects but to breed a culture of environmentally aware staff that look for ways to improve sustainability and reduce our carbon footprint. In addition to our internal initiatives, we aspire to assist and lead our vendors and clients in their efforts to become sustainability leaders.
- The Sustainability Guidelines, E-Steward and ISO-14001 procedures are maintained and revised when needed. These documents can be found on our Gateway site with access for all employees.
- Our Green Team has 10 members, all from different departments. Four members are officers and the sustainability program is endorsed by upper management. Our other facilities have an employee that is directly involved in implementing the Green Team programs where it makes sense.
- All programs recommended by the Green Team are submitted to upper management. If they make fiscal sense and the budget allows it, the programs are implemented, or a plan for implementation is created.
- EPC only buys appliances that meet the Energy Star ratings, whenever possible.
- All buildings and grounds are smoke free.
- EPC maintains an MSDS database for all chemicals used in cleaning and facility management. It can be accessed through Gateway by all employees.
- We have separate containers in the break room or in other designated areas in our facilities, for trash, aluminum, plastic, paper and cardboard to encourage recycling. We also collect stretch and bubble wrap in our receiving departments. All of these materials, except trash, go to recycling.
- All employees have a receptacle at their desk to collect paper for recycling.
- All signature boxes on emails have a reminder not to print the email, unless it is a necessity, to save waste.
- All settlement documents are emailed to our clients, unless they request them printed and mailed.
- EPC has installed software on all systems that learns the user’s time they are at their desks. 30 minutes after they leave in the evening, the system, monitor and printer are set to sleep mode. 30 minutes before they arrive in the morning, the equipment comes back on.
- Because we are in the business of asset recovery for electronics, all computer equipment used by our employees is used equipment from lease returns. Once these items become end-of-life, we demanufacture them and send the parts to audited downstream recyclers.
- EPC uses conference calls to all facilities to cut down on travel, when possible.
- All spent printer toner and cartridges, either from employee equipment or asset recovery equipment, are sent to a recycler.
- EPC uses local vendors when feasible.
EPC’s History of Sustainability
EPC is an IT Asset Recovery company. We refurbish and resell what equipment we can and demanufacture and recycle the remaining end-of-life equipment. In the past fiscal year, we have demanufactured and recycled 3,193,608 lbs. of electronics. We also refurbished and resold 3,469,047 pounds. Between recycling and reuse, EPC kept a combined 6,662,655 pounds out of the landfill in one year.
Other notable accomplishments include:
- EPC established its Green Team in order to organize our sustainability efforts.
- To try and curb the usage of plastic bottles, EPC has installed drinking stations that have purified tap water.
- EPC has asked for help from our customers to start accepting electronic settlement packages instead of paper.
- In trying to be a good neighbor, EPC accepts electronics from the public and recycles them for free. Last fiscal year, we collected 533,224 pounds of electronics waste from our community.
- Thanks to a St. Louis/Jefferson Solid Waste Management District grant, we bought a foam densifier. This allows us to recycle expanded polyethylene, expanded polypropylene, and expanded polystyrene (Styrofoam). The foam is about 90% air. The machine takes the foam, squeezes out the air and makes a dense log out if it. Now, instead of landfilling it, we can send it back to the manufacturer and they will turn it into more packing foam. In 2013, we recycled 23,637 cubic feet. Just for a comparison, a 10’x10’ room with an 8’ ceiling is 800 cubic feet, so it would fill almost 30 rooms. Not only do we use this for the foam we receive, but we also take it from the public.
- EPC uses Green Seal Certified paper towels and toilet tissue that is made from 100% recovered paper material and a minimum of 80% post-consumer material.
- One of our services is onsite data destruction. EPC has trucks that have a generator and a shredder for shredding hard drives and tapes. After shredding, the destroyed tape materials are sent to a waste-to-energy plant for processing at our expense.
- For each new hire, EPC has a series of training videos each employee is required to watch explaining our certifications and what it means to them. At the end of each video, there is a short test, and after the series of videos, they have a summary test. Every employee must view the videos and pass the tests on a yearly basis.
EPC’s Sustainable Future
Although EPC’s established sustainability efforts and environmental initiatives are significant, we realize that there is always opportunity for improvement. These are a few examples of our current challenges and our plans for addressing them:
- EPC is currently getting bids on LED lighting to replace the fluorescent lighting in our owned corporate building. This is a 100,000 square foot building that has approximately 1,000 fixtures. We have already disconnected lights that were over the racks in the warehouse in order to save energy.
- EPC did have software that learned when an employee’s computer was and was not in use. The software would power down the monitor and system when not in use. At the height of the use of this software, we saved 12,432 KWH over a year’s period of time. However, the software did not work well with Windows 7, which all of our PCs run now. We are now investigating and testing replacements.
- We have been using a foam producing machine at some of our facilities to package large items, such as servers. We are investigating replacement packaging that is more environmentally friendly.
- We have started to look for office supply companies that have recycled content products, beyond just paper. There are several around and we will start talking with them in the coming months. We hope to accomplish this by September 1st, 2014.
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