Going Green

Our Commitment to Sustainability Has Never Been Stronger.

Established in 1973, BMS Direct is a local, family-owned business that will be celebrating its 50th year anniversary in August 2023.

BMS Direct’s commitment to sustainability has never been stronger. Their approach is integrated throughout the business to strive to protect the environment, empower people and get results the right way today and tomorrow.

Over the years, the BMS team has continually looked for means to be an environmentally friendly business, initiating sustainability initiatives with the lofty goal of protecting global ecosystems for the sake of future generations. Some of the initiatives include the installation of public Tesla and standard EV charging stations and the businesses’ use of Tesla EV vehicles. They’ve installed motion-activated LED lighting throughout the 80,000 sq. ft. facility and recycle all material waste. Their team believes in leaving their footprint on the environment and in 2016, decided to initiate a going green solar initiative by installing 922 panels. This supplemented approximately 55+% of their overall energy consumption. Since then and as energy prices have continued to rise, they decided to continue down the solar path and maximize their roof space with the addition of more panels. Now, with 1489 panels generating 696 MWh per year, BMS Direct should cover 100% of their on-peak demand each day while also feeding access power back to the grid.

As an industry leader in the transactional print and mail industry, in partnership with their clients, BMS will continue to leave green footprints because they see it is making a difference.

Our Commitment to Sustainability Has Never Been Stronger. Read More »

For Transactional, Direct Mail, and In-Plant Printers

This article is a reprint from Canon Solutions America.

How Production Inkjet Can Help You Achieve Your Sustainability Goals

The Digital Advantage

If you currently print predominantly on offset or other non-inkjet technology, reducing your environmental impact and boosting your reputation for sustainability are just some of the substantial benefits you could achieve by moving to inkjet production printing.

By its very nature, digital printing offers many sustainability benefits, such as less waste, chemical-free production, and reduced make-ready and set-up time

By its very nature, digital printing offers many sustainability benefits, such as less waste, chemical-free production, and reduced make-ready and set-up time. You also can add cost-efficient production of shorter runs matched to actual demand, even down to a run length of one, among its green attributes. And being a digital process, efficiencies and consequential sustainability benefits can be enhanced—and the risk of human error reduced—by putting in place fully automated workflows managed by software.

Digital printing also gives print providers access to more sustainable business models, such as:

  • On-demand Printing: Sell first, then print.
  • Dynamic Publishing: Highly targeted content based on streamlined data workflows and automated production processes, resulting in lower page counts.
  • Programmatic Print: Linking marketing automation platforms and highly-automated print production workflows.

If you’d like to find out more about these business models, you can read our reTHINK Commercial Print guide here.

Elevated by Inkjet

Through the use of production inkjet technology, however, the environmental benefits of digital printing can be elevated to an even higher level—starting with the printheads.

Engineered for precision and durability, these printheads can have a lifespan of thousands of hours and may only need to be replaced after years of use.

Most inkjet sheetfed and web presses use piezo printhead technology, which works by rapidly passing an electric charge through a piezo crystal that flexes and, in doing so, forces a drop of ink out of a nozzle. Engineered for precision and durability, these printheads can have a lifespan of thousands of hours and may only need to be replaced after years of use. The longevity of the print heads also is aided by the close interdependency between the printhead technology and inkjet inks, resulting in minimal maintenance costs.

Eco-Friendly Inks

As for inkjet inks, the most environmentally friendly are stringently manufactured aqueous pigment inks. Being water-based, the inks emit low odor; do not carry substances of very high concern (SVHC); and are free of mineral oil, aromatic hydrocarbon (MOAH), and saturated hydrocarbons (MOSH). Look for process-color inks listed in the Nordic Swan database of approved printing chemicals that show good deinking properties, according to INGEDE method 11, when combined with appropriate substrates.

Look for process-color inks listed in the Nordic Swan database of approved printing chemicals that show good deinking properties.

Solvents used and produced in the manufacture of inks, coatings, and paints contain volatile organic compounds (VOCs), human-made chemicals that may have adverse health effects. However, sustainability-conscious suppliers see to it that the VOC emissions of ink and paper conditioning products remain well below the levels allowed by governmental guidelines. In addition, some inkjet presses use innovative technology to further reduce the impact of VOCs. For example, some drying technology uses a sufficiently low temperature that any VOC particles that do enter the paper fibers are not released into the air, so no exhaust air cleaning is required. Other presses also have integrated exhaust air cleaning systems that can eliminate VOC emissions.

Even More Sustainable Credentials

The main sustainability benefits that can be gained through adopting inkjet production technology offer a lot to consider. But there are other features and sustainable benefits to seek out when evaluating an inkjet press investment. For a start, energy consumption: while a press that is robust enough for heavy-duty 24/7 operations is a given, there are inkjet presses that feature low energy consumption per printed page.

Then, hand in hand with durability are longevity and upgradability. Though digital machines have at times been associated with “built-in obsolescence,” look for an inkjet press that has proved itself in the market and offers a clear upgrade path for new features and speed enhancements, maximizing the lifespan of the system and making it truly sustainable. An inkjet press that has been built to last and to operate around the clock—especially one that incorporates preventive maintenance concepts—is most likely to deliver the high levels of uptime and productivity required and, potentially, up to 10 million impressions per week.

An inkjet press that can be refurbished and has multiple recyclable parts also will add to your sustainability credentials.

Finally, an inkjet press that can be refurbished and has multiple recyclable parts also will add to your sustainability credentials. So, look for a supplier that maximizes the economic life of its inkjet presses with a high refurbishment rate and that recycles, within industry standard recycling processes, a high percentage of the parts in its presses.

Plus Canon’s Commitment

With sustainability becoming an increasingly important topic for print service providers, it is even more of a reason to think about moving some, if not all, your work to production inkjet and assessing which technology partner is going to be best for your business. Not only does Canon Solutions America offer a range of production inkjet presses to suit every application and run-length but, for us, sustainability is a key consideration from the very start of the inkjet innovation and development process—including using sustainable and/or recycled materials and energy-efficient manufacturing processes and eliminating hazardous substances wherever we can.

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Solar panel jackets? Yes – windows, furniture, and beyond – it’s a revolution in solar power!

The square panel is out? No, but imagination might be the only thing holding us back. 


Solar power is booming. In the U.S. alone, installation jumped 40%, and costs dropped 70%. Currently, this country generates 4% of electricity from the sun, but a particular administration wants the country to generate almost half of its electricity from the sun by 2050. So last November, funding passed, billions of dollars for clean energy projects to help move this industry forward! 

 Change in what solar looks like is here. Today, designers have started a new movement called the “solar movement.” Increasing solar application diversity – things like windows with solar cells. This resource looks affordable to many as innovative applications emerge, and 2022 may become a banner year for solar energy. 

Today, our buildings integrate as the panel – wow!

It is called, “Building Integrated Photovoltaics.” Tesla’s solar shingles are one example, but more and more examples are cropping up around the globe.

 Like phones, the more options individuals and businesses have to switch to solar, the more likely they will adopt it. Helping this industry is the steady decline in cost, but “transactional friction” must be worked on. It is just like bureaucratic red tape.  Think like when you’re securing a permit downtown and then next counting the cost of money saved on bills in the long run. So again, due diligence comes into play for your organization when deciding on installing new panels. 

Our sun’s light never ends, and solar panel energy uses this light.

We are creating a renewable source of electricity. Naturally replenished, energy is used constantly without running out. It takes 5 minutes of shining streams of beams to supply the entire United States’ electricity demand for 30 days. Solar energy is renewable, unlike fossil fuels. In addition, fossil fuels lack the benefits of renewable energy and are detrimental to our environment.

All this to say, like ripples on a pond, solar energy could work like a ripple effect. Solar is going to have a huge 2022 year. A promising mission for it is to accelerate the shift to cleaner, cheaper energy.

One of the largest solar installations in the state is right here at BMS. With 922 panels on our roof – yes, they’re square. This system provides approximately 55% of the power needed to run our plant, thus saving energy costs and reducing our carbon footprint.

Join the movement – solar power is here to stay.

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Earth Day – Looking for Ways to Protect Yourself & the Planet?

People are living in an ever-changing world – and just one year ago, the pandemic was a big one.

How has it affected us as a society? How has it affected our lives personally? The daily adjustments every one of us had to make to cope and live amongst one another was a definitive change – let’s all think about this during Earth Day. In this case, we adjust to three new practices – wearing masks, sanitizing our hands, and practicing social distance.   Each item protects yourself and the Planet.
The pandemic has not only affected the population but the environment too. Improvements in the air and water quality – due to quarantining – occurred in the latter half of 2020. Although significant, the haphazard disposal practices of organizations and society have created a negative impact. It makes one think, though.

What part can we play to lessen that negative impact?

A fundamental question as a person or business you should be asking yourself. In short, we can start with how the pandemic has worked its way into our daily living, as stated above.

For one, you are wearing a mask.

Choosing to use a reusable mask, such as fabric, is a start. Disposable masking offers a quick and easy solution to protect oneself – if not correctly disposed of, and it later can have negative impacts. Reusable masks will not be just safe for you and your community but the environment as well. You cannot only choose unique styles that suit you, but you can also relax in the knowledge that you won’t be adding unnecessary risk to the planet (source: Kalopsia).

Sanitizing is and will always be important going forward.

Hand sanitizers are green because most of the active ingredients are natural sources. A majority of hand sanitizers do not contain fragrances or dyes, which adds to the “environmentally-friendly” position (source: Clean link). Using eco-friendly brands is a must – and of course, if you do not have hand sanitizer at your reach – wash your hands!

Lastly, practicing social distance has been difficult for most of us, but it is necessary and doable.

If you are a small-business owner or work for a large organization – it can be not easy. The right signage – floor decals, wall graphics, window signs, or flags – can make this enforcement easier. Eco-friendly options are out there – and with the use of the graphics, it would not only protect your patrons but the environment too.
BMS prides itself on working hard and safely throughout this year.
During this last year, BMS worked tirelessly to keep employees safe and client projects going. We did this by following the key points listed above. If you need any products to help with your struggle, take a look at what we have to offer here: https://bit.ly/38uiMJX.

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The Reality of Greenwashing and Going Paperless.

Greenwashing the Facts

Going paperless to save the environment, who could be against that? That is basically what major financial institutions, big box stores, power companies, Insurance companies and others claim to show how environmentally aware they are. The truth is something completely different. E-Waste is the actual outcome of going paperless. The hardware needed to bring about the switch to paperless requires constant repair or replacement, leading to an ever-growing environmental crisis. Computers, monitors, old printers, are shipped to dumping grounds in Africa or China, seeping into the groundwater, and creating a toxic soup of heavy metals and carcinogens. 

Recently, in the United States and Canada, 120 companies, have altered, or altogether removed their statements about being green and paperless. The change came about at the urging of Two Sides, a consumer advocacy group urging the continued use of paper for things like statements and bills. They pointed out that being certified green in the U.S. and Canada has to fall within the guidelines set forth by both the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, and the Competition Bureau of Canada. Both agencies require that credible and specific science-based fact to support a company's green claims. It has been found that more often than not, requirements are not being met even as companies still claim that they are paperless to benefit the environment. In fact, the claims are nothing more than a marketing ploy used as a way to manipulate and force more customers to use digital options. 

What is not understood by the companies who go paperless, or the public at large, print and paper is a far more sustainable model than paperless that takes up landfill and leaks pollutants into the environment. Trees, especially with fast-growing hybrids, are a renewable resource and paper is among the most highly recycled substances on Earth. It makes much more sense to use paper when it is actually green and is preferred by consumers.

Paperless is Not Popular

A recent study found that despite all the environmental claims companies make, and their focus on a paperless society, the average person does not want to feel they are being pushed into going paperless. The study also found that the majority of people feel that it is not only their preference to receive paper documents but also their right. They also see the word "paperless" as a ruse. Most people said that it is not truly paperless if a consumer has to print out a hard copy of their documents for things like applying for a job, or a mortgage. They also see the push for being more environmentally friendly as a convenient way to cut a popular service in order to save money.  The resistance against going paperless is so strong among consumers in the United States and Canada that a whopping 45% and 34% respectively said they would move to another provider such as a new bank or cellular provider. 

Paper is Green and Popular

The bottom line is that paper through the careful use of using trees at the right time and planting a new one to replace each that was used is a green option. It is clear from the data on the subject across the consumer spectrum; paper is more popular than paperless. It makes sense for companies who want to retain customers and truly make an impact on the environment to return to paper. Yes, some consumers prefer paperless, but they are in the minority.

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Document Centers "Go Green"

Environmental Efforts in 2010

By Mike Porter, President, Print/Mail Consultants

Please recycleThe other day I was asked if 2010 was going to be the year of “going green” in the document industry. I guess because I’ve written a lot on the subject over the last year and developed a couple of products to help document centers be more green, someone thought I might have some insight. I answered that I thought the amount of resources devoted to green projects depended a great deal upon the economy, but it doesn’t take an expert to come to that conclusion.

It’s not that companies intentionally want to ignore the impact they have on the environment; they just have other areas that require their attention, and they have to make priorities. I doubt that environmental efforts will be moving towards the top of the list until the economic concerns are handled.

While companies may not be taking actions in their document print and mail operations specifically for the environmental benefits, some of them are going to lower their environmental impact anyway as a byproduct of cutting costs. From an environmental perspective, I suppose whether you justify green projects in document operations with related cost savings or you get the projects approved with the cost-reduction aspects alone makes no difference, so some greening will continue, regardless of the economy. But creating the greatest environmental benefits may require more effort than taking the quick and easy approach.

recycle_save treesAccording to a survey we did last year, a lot of document centers have already taken two steps towards environmental sustainability: Switching to materials with a higher percentage of recycled content and recycling their own paper waste. Unfortunately, our survey revealed that often those are the only measures that have been taken. Perhaps that is an indicator of the impact the economy has had on corporate environmental sustainability objectives. More involved efforts have yet to be tackled.

Closing the Gate after the Cows Have Left the Corral

It seems to me that by the time a piece of paper reaches the print production facility, most of the impact it is going to have upon the environment has already taken place. Isn’t the consumption of fuel and energy and the emission of greenhouse gases and other pollutants that are connected with all the processes necessary to de-ink, manufacture, package and transport the material about the same for all paper, regardless of recycled content? Using recycled paper sounds like a good idea, but without taking other measures, how big of a difference does it really make?

I’m not suggesting that we abandon paper recycling efforts; we should be printing on recycled paper. I’d much rather see paper go to the recycling center than the landfill, and I think we should reuse those paper fibers as many times as we can. I just believe that we would enjoy greater environmental benefits by manufacturing, transporting and printing fewer pieces of paper, of all varieties, than we can ever achieve by simply switching to using material with a higher recycled content.

So that’s what we teach document professionals with our training classes, and it’s where we concentrate our efforts in the green assessments that we do for clients. We help them reduce the consumption of paper materials with strategies such as eliminating undeliverable addresses, reducing page counts, increasing electronic delivery or ridding print jobs of duplicates and irrelevant mailpieces. As a result, they are able to order less paper. Combined with using recycled materials for the remaining documents that are produced, and continued in-house recycling efforts, I think we help companies make a difference.

2010 may not be the remembered as the year of going green, but many companies can make a start this year by changing one or two things in document operations that will result in lower paper consumption and less wasted output. When things get better financially, then the efforts can be expanded.

Mike Porter is an expert in print and mail operations and President of Print/Mail Consultants, a consulting firm that helps companies nationwide be more productive, adapt to changing requirements and lower costs in their document operations. For more information on green training or assessments, visit www.printmailconsultants.com or email Mike directly at mporter@printmailconsultants.com.

From Mailing Systems Technology. Click here for a direct link.

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