Lexmark celebrates Earth Day with invigorated environmental efforts
Wednesday, April 23, 2003
LEXINGTON, Ky., April 22 -- Concurrent with the global recognition of Earth Day and consistent with its objective of being a corporate leader in environmental efforts, Lexmark International, Inc. today introduced the Lexmark Environmental Program (LEP), a multifaceted initiative that strengthens the company's current environmental programs and motivates its employees to strive for continued innovation in this essential discipline. All of the company's many environmental initiatives - including corporate programs and programs executed at the country level - are now organized under the auspices of the LEP to help the company make its environmental vision a reality. "Many companies talk about dedication to the environment, but Lexmark validates its environmental commitment with a wide-ranging collection of 'green' initiatives around the world," said Paul Curlander, Lexmark's chairman and chief executive officer, in announcing the LEP. "Until now, many of those initiatives have been quietly making a difference in the regions where they are executed. With the new Lexmark Environmental Program, we are raising the profile of our commitment and motivating all of our employees to continue pursuing industry-leading environmental practices. The Lexmark Environmental Program is more than just a philosophy and more than just policies - it's our Vision and Values* in action." Steering the LEP is the Lexmark Environmental Committee, a permanent, cross-functional, cross-divisional body with representatives from every geography. Led by Pam Winner, director of technology and services, the Lexmark Environmental Committee will enhance the company's environmental programs and objectives by demanding high standards, encouraging greater innovation and advocating best-management practices that continue to strengthen Lexmark as an environmentally proactive company. The Lexmark Environmental Program is focused on three key areas: 1. Resource Management - This category spans product remanufacturing and recycling programs, energy conservation, waste prevention and minimization, resource conservation and office recycling programs. On a worldwide basis, Lexmark continues to focus on minimizing the waste produced at Lexmark locations. As an example, at the corporate headquarters, nearly 13 million pounds of cardboard, 2.6 million pounds of paper, 1.8 million pounds of scrap metal and 756,000 pounds of plastic were kept out of landfills in 2002 alone because of Lexmark's focus on resource management. Similar programs are in place at Lexmark's other worldwide locations. A critical component of the resource management discipline is the Lexmark Cartridge Collection Program (previously known as Operation ReSource), a wide- ranging set of initiatives designed to get empty printer cartridges returned to Lexmark for remanufacturing or recycling. The Lexmark Cartridge Collection Program consolidates all of the company's worldwide cartridge return methods and partnerships. All of Lexmark's toner cartridges can be returned to the company through the Lexmark Cartridge Collection Program. Under this program, Lexmark offers such customer conveniences as free cartridge return (with Lexmark paying for shipping and handling) and a new online service option to help customers return used cartridges. The company also provides its customers the opportunity to share in its commitment to the environment through such products as the Lexmark Return Program cartridge. This cartridge offers business customers a toner cartridge that comes with a discount in exchange for the customer's agreement that it be returned only to Lexmark for remanufacturing or recycling. Regular cartridges at regular prices without this agreement are also available. Previously known as the Prebate program, this initiative has dramatically reduced the number of used toner cartridges entering the world's landfills. 2. Product management - From drawing board to product sale, Lexmark strives to pursue environmental leadership in such categories as: * Packaging Initiatives: In packaging design, Lexmark strives for Design for Environment (DfE) attributes that include an efficient balance of minimum size and weight, maximum recyclability and recycle content, and avoidance of hazardous materials, to yield complete functional packaging systems. * Product Eco-Labels: Many Lexmark products have achieved recognition of environmental attributes by the German Blue Angel Environmental label and Canadian EcoChoice programs. In addition, the Nordic EcoDeclaration is used to communicate attributes in a standard format, allowing customers to select environmentally preferable products. Many products have earned the EPA Energy Star label, which is recognized world wide to designate energy-saving products. * Environmental Management Systems: Lexmark follows a corporate environmental policy. Lexmark was among the earliest companies to achieve ISO 14001 certification at its Orleans, France location. Other Lexmark locations are working toward certification. 3. Citizenship - As a company that strives to be an environmentally responsible neighbor and employer, Lexmark is committed to putting its values into action in the places where it conducts business. Consequently, the company continually pursues environmental partnerships with local communities that result in the prevention of air, water and land pollution. A safe and healthy work environment is also an essential outcome of the citizenship focus. Where Lexmark is heading Lexmark believes there is still more that can be done to protect and preserve our planet through voluntary sustainability initiatives and programs that can shape its business. In Europe, for example, Lexmark supported the objectives of the 2002 European Union legislation known as the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive and has established a European team to design and implement the optimal business model. Lexmark will enhance its efforts to ensure that toner and other cartridges are recovered and recycled. For example, a voluntary cartridge collection program for inkjet cartridges is soon to be launched by Lexmark in Europe. Lexmark also recognizes that customers need a means to keep printer hardware out of landfills and is currently evaluating programs for printer collection so they can be recycled in a similar manner as Lexmark recycles its own electronic waste.