CleanPrint: Environmentally Friendly Printing

Jackie Steele, Staff Writer

Throughout our academic careers, we are asked to print various documents for school purposes that can drag on for pages unnecessarily. Although many things can be shared online to avoid as much paper use as possible, it is often necessary to print a hardcopy.

In recent years, there have been a number of measures taken to protect our environment in the midst of the ecologic turmoil that we, as a planet, have found ourselves in. Format Dynamics is a venture-funded company based in Denver, Colorado founded in 2004. Cleanprint, one of Format Dynamics’ web products, has taken major strides in paper saving by allowing users to cut out information on web pages they don’t need to print.

“For users, printing off of websites was often a mess; for the website, this was a high-engagement activity with a poor user experience and no monetization,” Format Dynamics CEO and founder Ethan Holien said.

“Environmental factors were always important, though early on we saw them as more the user’s desire not to waste expensive paper and ink.”

To this day, CleanPrint has helped save more than 506 million pages of paper, over 17,000 trees, by allowing users to make font sizes larger or smaller, eliminate images and advertisements, and change the grayscale of text to save printer ink.

“I think it would be very wise for Miramonte to begin using CleanPrint,” Samuel Shain, Co-President of Miramonte’s Environmental Club, said.

“The school spends thousands of dollars on ink and paper, and with CleanPrint, this can change. We should absolutely take advantage of this free opportunity to make our school more environmentally friendly.”

The first version of CleanPrint was developed in 2006, but has since been revised, most recently in 2010. Not only is CleanPrint available for larger companies, but individual users may also download it for free onto their toolbars and use it whenever they print a webpage.

In addition to CleanPrint, Format Dynamics has a newer web product, Pluck, that allows users to choose and refine content they wish to share over the internet.

Some major news outlets that have adopted the eco-friendly ways of CleanPrint include CNN, NBC News, ABC News, Fox Sports, Digital First Media, Gannett, Slate and Rodale.

This relatively new innovation opens a whole array of possiblities to aid and reduce our amount of paper waste.CleanPrint is the first step to providing schools with alternative and sustainable methods of printing necessary materials and an environmentally friendly solution.