Printwedstrijd in Flux.

Becoming aware of your printing behavior

The first week of the national 'PrintLess Contest: Tone it down!' didn’t really break any records yet in Flux; a lot had to be printed because of the exams. The TU/e building is taking part in the national competition via the GO Green Office of the university. The contest is held in April and May and aims at a percentage reduction of prints compared to last year. Making people aware of their printing behavior and having them print less are the goals that the organization has in mind.

photo Judith van Gaal

Brigitte van de Wijdeven, Education and Student Affairs secretary who works in Flux, cannot say that she has had to refill less printing paper compared to other weeks. But she sees a good reason for this: "It was exam week last week and the exams had to be printed." On average, she makes a round twice a week through Flux, Cascade and Spectrum to refill the printing paper. It normally takes about nine boxes for one round. “I am curious if I will have to refill less soon. I expect that it will only be measurable in a month."

Bas Turk, who works for the GO Green Office TU/e, states that "an average of 32.700 pages per week were printed in Flux last year, that is 16 pages per person". He bases that information on the data from Flux and the Green Business Club - that opted for the national organization of the competition.

Ilya Kolpakov, master student of Applied Physics, says that he prints on average once a week. "I read as much as possible online, also because of the environment." Also Diederik Markus (student Electrical Engineering) who is located a little further away in Flux, says he doesn't print much. "I sometimes print a paper to give my eyes some rest from looking at a screen." The two students sitting with him, Dominique Gijsbers and Wilco Verpoorten, do press the print button more often. “We are studying Architecture and we have to print drawings. Less printing is almost impossible."


In any case, Turk wants to make people more aware of what they do and do not print and distribute via paper, and hopes for tips. He has already received a few. “Three employees had tipped independently of one another to send all invitations for inaugural lectures and valedictory speeches and such, only digitally. We have submitted this proposal to the Communication Expertise Center and we understood that during the directors' meeting a few weeks ago, they happened to ask to work digitally as much as possible.”

This is the second time that this competition has been organized and the first time that TU/e has taken part. Other participating parties include PostNL and the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam. The GO Green Office wants to plant the ‘saved’ trees on campus at the end of the competition with the help of Real Estate Management.

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