Sprint leads the way for green printing and mailing initiatives

Several major companies came out on top in an efforts to reduce their impact on the environment via their printing and mailing campaigns. The ForestEthics 2011 Green Grades Report Card ranked 12 Fortune 500 companies, gauging their green printing initiatives, and determined that firms including Sprint and AT&T's efforts were most noteworthy.

Green Grades examines companies' paper sustainability efforts, including their use of post-consumer recycled content, their reduction in paper consumption and their avoidance of Sustainable Forestry Initiative greenwash.

Sprint was the leader, according to Green Grades, avoiding paper from endangered forests and aiming to reduce the weight of the paper it purchases by 30 percent over the next year. AT&T also made strides, aiming to give preference to those products manufactured by the Forest Stewardship Council.

"As some of the world's largest paper consumers, these companies are part of forest destruction in many regions. The good news is that ForestEthics has persuaded several of them to use their influence and buying power to help protect forests," said Mark Schofield of ForestEthics.

While direct mail marketing has often been criticized for its impact on the environment, a company can take strides towards sustainability by linking up with green printing initiatives.