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Trees, Water & People & Smartpress.com in Partnership for the Planet

by Sara Duane | April 20, 2014

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It’s almost Earth Day and this weekend, many communities, organizations and individuals have been participating in activities to support the health of the planet. Surveys and polls have shown that approximately 75% of Americans consider themselves to be “eco-friendly,” whether that means they try to drive less, use less chemicals, choose earth-friendly products, recycle and/or any other number of simple practices people can do in their everyday lives. Smartpress.com is no different, we try to make changes that reduce, reuse, recycle.

smartpress 100 replanted programOne of our proudest achievements, though, is our partnership with Trees, Water & People that allows us to be 100% replanted. We are an online printing company, so naturally we go through a lot of paper. Even though all of our paper stocks are made with some percentage of recycled paper, it was hard seeing it all go out the door and knowing what had to be sacrificed in order to make our customers happy and make a profit as a company. We wanted to do something about it to become a truly green printing company.

employing people trees water peopleWe began our partnership with Trees, Water & People (TWP) in 2012 and as of April 2014, we have planted 7,139  trees. Through this program, trees are planted in rural communities that border protected areas of forests in El Salvador. Planting trees in a place like Central America has important benefits to the community and the earth. First, the cost of planting is lower in these places than more developed communities. Second, the tropical climate helps the trees to grow quickly. Last, but certainly not least, the tree nurseries create jobs for local people to make an income, feed their families and help fuel the local economy. reforestation nursery

From 1998-2013, TWP planted 5,368,594 trees and counting. The organization has helped facilitate successful community-led reforestation projects in El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, and Nicaragua. They establish and maintain tree nurseries, then plant the trees at deforested areas, family farms and around homes. They provide guidance on how to plant, graft, and maintain the trees to keep the forests growing and thriving. They also educate people in the local communities about the positive environmental impacts of reforestation.watering seedlings trees water people

Their approach to reforestation goes beyond simply protecting forests, planting trees and education. Through conservation and the responsible management of forest resources, TWP helps to strengthen economic development by working with existing local groups, schools, and communities in extremely low-income rural and peri-urban areas. Additionally, though many of the trees will remain growing for their natural lives, trapping carbon and nurturing soil, some of the trees will be used for fruit production and firewood.

TWP does more for the earth and its inhabitants than reforestation. They have other programs which include:

Clean Cookstoves – Designing clean, efficient cookstoves that greatly reduce deadly indoor air pollution, deforestation from fuel consumption, and high fuel costs associated with the dirtier, inefficient stoves they replace.

Solar Energy – Distributing small (<15W) solar lighting technologies that affordably meet lighting and device charging needs for energy in poor populations.

Food Security – Empowering Native Americans to grow their own nutritious and traditional foods, an important step toward tribal food independence. They also teach the importance of nutrition and the negative health effects of processed foods.

Sanitation – Installing dry composting latrines in El Salvador that provide for more sanitary conditions, improved quality of life and preventing waste from contaminating soil and water supplies.

Tribal Renewable Energy – Working with reservation communities, TWP builds and installs supplemental solar heaters for families, provides green job training, and plants windbreak and shade trees around homes.

Environmental Education – The SunMobile is a mobile educational kit that visits schools and community events. It features hands-on learning projects that teach about renewable energy and energy efficiency in a fun and unique way.

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There’s also more to Smartpress.com’s commitment to the environment in addition to our partnership with TWP. All of our papers contain some recycled material, our presses are more energy efficient than traditional presses, the inks are nontoxic, and we try to always look for more ways to reduce, reuse, recycle. You can read more about our efforts in this post Sustainability & Energy Efficiency with Digital Printing & Smartpress.com.

We’re earth-friendly and we’re a top-quality green printing company. You can learn more about us and why we’re a smart choice to fulfill your digital printing needs. Stay up to date with our activities by following us on  FacebookTwitterPinterest or Google+.

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