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Sprint Says ecoEnvelope Will Save $500,000, 447 Tons of Paper

Sprint Nextel says sending customers bills in “ecoEnvelopes” will save the company just under a half million dollars in operational costs, and the equivalent of 447 tons of paper, in about a year.

The initiative allows Sprint customers to receive and send payments using the same two-in-one reusable envelope, which the company says in just over a year will save 9,931,834 gallons of water while preventing 859,047 pounds of solid waste and 2,692,185 pounds of CO2e.

Sprint says it’s the first wireless carrier and one of a few select retailers to offer the ecoEnvelope to customers. Canada’s Vancity Visa, a division of the bank that issues credit cards, began using the reusable envelopes in 2009, according to ecoEnvelope. The envelope company was founded in 2002 by a former organic farmer and bee keeper.

Sprint says the shift to ecoEnvelope is part of its broader commitment to responsibly procure printing paper as reflected in its Paper & Print Procurement Policy, which was updated in late 2011.

In the policy, Sprint commits to four goals:

  • Increase purchase of certified paper to 90 percent by year-end 2012, 100 percent by year-end 2017.
  • Increase suppliers’ compliance with Sprint’s social and environmental criteria to 50 percent by year-end 2012, 90 percent by year-end 2017.
  • Increase recycled content in paper purchased to 10 percent by year-end 2012, 25 percent by year-end 2017.
  • Reduce total weight of paper purchased 30 percent by year-end 2012, 40 percent by year-end 2017.

Sprint updated the policy with support from environmental not-for-profit Canopy, which collaborates with large-scale forest product customers to promote sustainable supply chains.

Last year, Sprint was one of a host of Fortune 500 companies that said it would stop using the Sustainable Forestry Initiative’s eco-label on branded paper products or company publications, following a report that alleged SFI “greenwashes” environmentally damaging products.

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2 thoughts on “Sprint Says ecoEnvelope Will Save $500,000, 447 Tons of Paper

  1. If Sprint *really* wants to reduce paper why don’t they reduce the # of pgs of their bill?! I get a 3 page bill – a page and a half of which are Sprint ads?!?! It would be so easy for them to cut their paper use by another third if they just cut their self-serving advertising to people that are already customers. I guess it’s time to sign up for eBills…

  2. You have been thoroughly “green washed”. Sprint’s new “green” envelope is a joke. They print their bill on 6 pages, and then claim that they are trying to save tons of paper, waste, water, etc by having customers reuse the envelope. What they are really trying to do is make paying by mail such a pain that everyone uses on-line payment instead. Although on-line payment can be convenient, many businesses need the physical paper trail. If sprint was really interested in “going green”, they would print their bill on one page and go back to a real envelope for those that pay by mail.

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