Environmental award given to Heidelberg by PrintAction
Monday, April 14, 2008
Press release from the issuing companyApril 11, 2008 -- Heidelberg recently won the “Most Progressive Environmental Process” award of Canadian trade magazine PrintAction. Over 400 representatives of the Canadian print media industry were present to see Heidelberg receive the award for its environmentally friendly presses. One aspect that was rated particularly highly was the company’s holistic approach to environmental protection, with environmental issues being taken into consideration at every stage – from the development and manufacture of presses to their operation in printshops.
The Lowe Martin Group and Hemlock Printers Ltd. both received gold awards in the “Most environmentally progressive printers (100+ employees)” category. Both printshops use Heidelberg presses and this is the third year that Hemlock Printers has won the prestigious award. Heidelberg sheetfed offset equipment at Hemlock Printers includes three Speedmaster SM 102’s, Speedmaster CD 74, Speedmaster SM 52 and two Quickmaster 46 presses with a total of 40 printing units.
Hemlock Printers also uses the Prinect Image Control color measuring system and has been able to minimize its use of resources and the level of waste and emissions it produces. In 2007, it generated 80 percent less non-recyclable waste than the previous year.
The PrintAction awards go to manufacturers, suppliers, printshops, and print buyers with outstanding green credentials. The awards cover various categories, such as the development of innovative technologies and processes for environmental protection and social commitment to the environment. They focus on projects that extend over a number of years and therefore have lasting benefits for the environment.
For a number of years, Heidelberg has been working on solutions for the development, production and utilization of presses that will limit the depletion of resources, reduce emissions and cut wastage. The company made environmental protection a key corporate goal back in 1992, and has recently given this crucial issue greater strategic weight than ever before. “After all, we have a responsibility to the environment, to our customers and – in the long term – to the next generation,” explains Dr. Jürgen Rautert, Director for Engineering and Manufacturing.
Heidelberg drives eco printing
Last year, to push environmental factors higher up the agenda when designing and developing new presses, Heidelberg joined forces with the Darmstadt University of Technology to develop an intranet-based environment portal. Developers working on a new inking unit, for example, can use the portal to obtain the relevant environmental requirements from a comprehensive database. Moreover, the developers’ own environmental protection know-how can also be fed into the database, where it can be used in the medium term as an example of best practice.
The portal is to be launched shortly and has been designed to anchor environmental protection in the very first stage of the product life cycle – a stage that is also crucial for shaping the future and driving standards forward.
In 1996, the foundry in Amstetten was the very first site operated by a press manufacturer to be granted an eco-certificate. Environmental management systems to ISO 14001 are now in place at all sheetfed offset locations. Heidelberg sites log a whole range of key environmental data, including their consumption of electricity, gas and water and the volume of waste they generate. This data is regularly analyzed by both internal and external specialists. There is also an annual management review covering all these issues to establish the potential for further improvements and savings. Over recent years, the impact on the environment of a number of Heidelberg sites has been reduced substantially, despite a significant growth in production. For example, the foundry in Amstetten, which is an energy-intensive plant by its very nature, succeeded in reducing its consumption of natural gas for each metric ton of output by 30 percent and cutting water consumption by 20 percent – all in just one year. This end-to-end environmental philosophy also incorporates the suppliers for each site, who are obliged to meet similar environmental standards to Heidelberg.
Besides its own production, the company focuses on developing innovative, environmentally friendly presses. For example, the new Speedmaster XL 105 has increased productivity by 30 percent with the same, and in some cases even lower, energy consumption. Key peripherals in the Star System also reduce the environmental impact of the printing process. The PowderStar AP 500 lowers powder application and dust levels, the AirStar air supply system reduces energy consumption by 30 to 50 percent, and the new DryStar dryers boast significantly enhanced performance levels with the same energy consumption.
Paper consumption is the largest contributor to CO2 emissions, but a Prinect software package can help cut paper waste by around 400 sheets for each job.
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