The Environmental Approach to CD & DVD

Posted on June 30, 2008 by

Another common misconception in the industry: There are no environmentally friendly ways of doing CD or DVD these days. This couldn’t be further from the truth. True…yes….the optical media portion of a project is plastic. It’s all plastic. It’s not generally considered recyclable, however, I’ve heard that there are a few companies working on a way to reprocess the plastic back down without harming the environment for reuse in blank media production. I usually tell my clients that the best place to start when considering an environmental approach to producing a CD or a DVD is the packaging. A standard jewel case, while a cost effective option, is all plastic, however, you can get versions of them that utilize recycled plastic. Same thing with the plastic trays in Digipaks, which is something that we offer our clients. If you want to avoid plastics all together…a great place to start is all board stock. We offer them in 100% recycled stock options as well. CD wallets and sleeves are great choices for this kind of thing, and I encourage my clients to indicate as much within the design, as in…communicate that the environmental impact was considered. Clients and consumers alike appreciate knowing that someone contemplated the environment at some stage in the process, and if anything…the “every little bit helps” attitude resonates with those who care about it as an issue. A small effort to be environmentally conscious can be better than nothing at all, and you’d be surprised how many clients have communicated this to us post completion of an order.

Things to take into account when considering board stock for a packaging option as an alternative to unrecycled plastics.

1 ton of recycled board allows to:

  • Reduce 64% of energy use: a saving of 4000 kW/h
  • Reduce 58 % of water use: preserving approximately 26 000 L of water.
  • Reduce 74% of air pollution: a reduction of 27 kilos of various contaminants, and a 35% reduction in water pollution.
  • Reduce: the use of bleaching agents by 1/10th
  • Save: 2 Square Meters of space in landfills
  • Save: 17 adult trees

Food for thought.

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