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Industry Insight

Office Depot Offers First Eco-Labels for Electronics

We wrote a few weeks ago about the EPEAT standard for electronics,

By Richard Romano
Published: July 31, 2012

We wrote a few weeks ago about the EPEAT standard for electronics, in the context of Apple’s brief withdrawal from the standard, but this week, via Environmental Leader, an Office Depot in Portland, Oregon, will become the first major retailer to sell products featuring EPEAT’s EcoSense label.
The label is the consumer-facing brand extension for the Electronics Product Environmental Assessment Tool, a environmental rating system for electronics developed in 2006 for use by business and government purchasers. EPEAT, which is run by the nonprofit Zero Waste Alliance, provides information for buyers to compare products based on environmental considerations in addition to cost and overall performance.
The EcoSense label itself will come in Gold, Silver, and Bronze versions (why does molybdenum always get dissed? It’s a great metal that’s fun to say!), each iteration reflecting different environmental criteria. If you’re in the Portland area today, and need to visit an Office Depot, you are invited to “check out Office Depot’s newly remodeled Portland store showcasing eco-conscious products, learn more about ways to go greener at work and receive a unique green gift. Snacks and light refreshments will be served.” The new store, by the way, is designed as a smaller retail location to reduce its overall carbon footprint.
The store features energy-saving building elements such as T5 lights and reflectors that use fewer bulbs than traditional fixtures, and daylight and occupancy sensors to cut down on lighting use. The store also features an energy management system, reused store fixtures and carpets with recycled content, Office Depot says.

Please offer your feedback to Richard. He can be reached at richard@whattheythink.com.



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