Thursday, June 26, 2008

Green Choices

How to Choose Green
Here are some factors to consider when choosing for maximum sustainability:

Product Weight:
Products that weigh less require less raw materials to create and consume fewer natural resources than comparable, heavier products. The energy and fuel required to transport products can also be reduced by lighter-weight products.

Number of Parts:
Products designed for both maximum function and simplicity will, by their very nature, require as few parts as possible. Fewer parts mean fewer manufacturing processes, less shipping, and less packaging, all of which save energy and carbon emissions.

Recycled and Recyclable Content:
While recyclability is often a hallmark of a green product, use of recycled materials is a better sign of an earth-conscious manufacturer. Select products that contain both recycled and recyclable content for maximum sustainability.

Ease of Disassembly and Upgradeability:

Products designed for quick and simple disassembly are more likely to be recycled than those that are difficult to take apart. And products that can be easily upgraded in the field-for instance, the replacement of spent cushions on task seating-enable longer product life. This, in turn, limits the waste that could be generated by the disposal of used products as well as the resources that would be required to replace products in their entirety.

Aluminum Components:
The use of lightweight aluminum signifies quality as well as green characterisitcs. Aluminum never degrades, so it can be recycled infinitely, and because recyclers are paid a premium for aluminum scrap, the likelihood that a product containing aluminum will be recycled is higher than products made of less valuable components like recyclable plastic.

Distribution Practices:
Products and packaging designed to use the fewest and smallest boxes possible not only reduce waste, but allow more items to fit on delivery trucks to cut back on emissions and fossil fuels. Packaging should be eliminated entirely whenever feasible.

Quality and Durability:
Quality counts when it comes to sustainability. Long-lasting, high performance products require replacement less frequently than lower quality choices, reducing the impact of disposal and replacement.

Additional Green Practices:
Manufacturers can lead by example by utilizing green vendors themselves-such as using printers certified by the Forest Stewardship Council to create marketing materials-and by supporting environmental causes and reputable organizations.

~ Good design achieves more with less--especially when it comes to our Earth's limited resources. At Humanscale, environmental sustainability is integral to every step of product development to complement function, quality, and aesthetics for tools that provide maximum ergonomic comfort with minimal environmental stress.
For more information about Humanscale products contact us at (713) 871-8686 or by visiting the website

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