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FLEXO Magazine : March 2009
PLANTS & PROCESSES Sustainability from a Federal Perspective T he u.s. Public Printer Robert C. Tapella, oversees the largest industrial manufacturing facility in the District of Columbia. Since its inception, the mission of the u.s. Government Printing Office (GPO) is to "Keep America Informed." GPO produces the documents of our democracy in both print and online publications to ensure free and permanent public access. In fulfilling this mission, GPO's men and women try to be as environmentally sensitive as possible in virtually every step of the printing and online publishing process. Tapella has developed a program to address sustainable envi- ronmental stewardship and has recently implemented a variety of green initiatives in its operations. These initiatives have become part of the products and services that GPO routinely provides for Congress, Federal agencies, and the public. During Fiscal Year 2008, GPO articulated a vision for the entire lifecycle of what it produces, from how it sources the raw materi- als and how it produces its products, to what happens to the prod- ucts when consumers are done with them. For GPO, this means: . Investigating new technologies to move from web offset presses to digital equipment to reduce paper consumption. . Accelerating the re-engineering of business processes in production, procurement, documents; dissemination, and administration to take advantage of the efficiencies of- fered by digital technology, reduce paperwork, and improve efficiency. . Conducting energy audits throughout facilities with the objective of reducing energy demand while increasing func- tionality and efficiency. . Using paper in our plant and for Congressional and agency customers, that goes beyond meeting the minimum require- ments for recycled content but still meets the challenge of cost and performance. . Reducing hazardous waste through solvent recovery systems, and reducing the total amount of waste generated by our operations · Installing a "green" roof on the building, in targeted areas, that features an energy efficient, bio-based roofing system, which should double the life expectancy of the roof and re- duce heating demands in the building. Looking to the future, GPO has proposed moving it's facility in Washington, D.C. into the first LEED Platinum printing plant in America. The current facility is composed of four buildings total- ing 1.5 million square feet. GPO's newest building was completed in 1940. The plant is located on multiple floors, requiring numer- ous elevators for the transportation of our product. The buildings are too large and antiquated to meet the printing and digital needs of the 21st century. The Public Printer is proud of what GPO has accomplished in this field. Sustainable environmental stewardship will continue to be a concentrated effort at GPO. Tapella believes the future of sustainable environmental stewardship means being proactive and making changes, so that GPO becomes a more efficient operation that makes better use of the resources under its control. This is not a partisan issue. It's good business, and it's good government. Former President Theodore Roosevelt once said, "Our position in the world has been attained by the extent and thoroughness of the control we have achieved over nature; but we are more, not less, dependent upon what she furnishes than at any pervious time of history." This articulates the vision of Public Printer Bob Tapella for GPO. President Roosevelt made this observation 100 years ago during a speech to a national conference on conserva- tion held at the White House. It is just as accurate today as it was in 1908, and remains a timeless call to sustainable environmental stewardship. . THIS ARTICLE WAS submitted by the u.s. Government Printing Office. Tapella will deliver one of two keynote addresses at the annual NEHS Conference March 16-17 in Indianapolis, IN. For more informa- tion about the GPO, visit www.gpo.gov. MARCH 2009 - www.f I exog ra p hy.o rg FLEXO
Sustainable Winter 2009