There are many of us out there who understand the incredible impact that we have on our environment, and the fact that currently most of this impact is of the negative sort. Fortunately, those of us who understand this are also willing to do something about it. The good news is that an increasing number of individuals are starting to thicken the ranks of the environmentally conscious.
Modern living puts an incredible strain on all the available natural resources, be it fresh water or the oceans, fossil fuels or mineral deposits, or trees. Mankind has been extremely destructive in its dealings with the environment around it. However, in the last couple of decades we have reached a technological point where we can start to lessen our carbon footprint; in essence our negative impact on the environment.
One example is that of paper, which is used or wasted in huge quantities on a daily basis. Think of newspapers, various kinds of glossy magazines, office documents, post-it notes, paper used for mail, and paper used in the household in kitchens and bathrooms. We use it so much that we take it for granted. You would be shocked to know the facts about paper usage. Every year, more than 8 million tons of trees are cut down to create over 20 billion paper catalogs in the US alone – stats from Forest Ethics.
It is bad enough that scads of trees are being cut down to create paper catalogs. To compound the problem, most of those catalogs have no recycled content. They are often thrown into the bin without being read, and they most certainly end up in the landfills. Such waste of paper is simply insane. It is true that paper is bio-degradable, and those paper catalogs will degrade eventually. But the problem resides in the fact that trees take a long time to grow back and a lack of trees has widespread consequences on the environment.
In order to save paper, we need to look at digital alternatives. The digital revolution and the advent of the Internet have been a real blessing for the environmentally conscious. The fact that you can keep documents and information in digital form as opposed to having them printed on paper means that you save paper, and therefore save trees.
One great example of a digital alternative is the ecatalog, which is basically a digitized version of pretty much anything that you would normally have on sheets of paper. It can be a book, a magazine, a brochure, or a presentation of one’s services or products. An e-catalog offers several advantages over traditional paper catalogs, a few major ones being:
- A significant reduction in cost. There is no need to print or mail an e catalog, so there are no printing or postage costs.
- An ecatalog has a much greater number of target audiences since it uses the global reach of the Internet. It can be set up on a website and/or sent out to customers on a CD/DVD/USB drive.
- It is a boon for the product seller as well, because it expedites the sales process by bringing the products directly to the customers’ PC.
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