Donate your desktop printer and save carbon

Bethany McNally
Thursday 13 October 2022

We are launching a campaign to encourage colleagues using stand-alone desktop printers to use the UniPrint service instead. Central printing services are a more environmentally friendly and secure alternative. Desktop printers collected as part of the initiative will go to Scottish charity, Reusing IT, so they can be redistributed to low income households, charities, and voluntary organisations. 

Why we should reduce the number of desktop printers 

Upgrading our printers in 2020 presented an opportunity to lower our carbon footprint, fitting in with the University’s Social Responsibility statement.  

Multifunction printers, as opposed to separate desk side printers and scanners use around 50% less energy than the combined devices.  

Desktop printers at the University produce around 3 tonnes of carbon dioxide each year. That’s the same as travelling by car from St Andrews to London…36 times! We’re asking staff to voluntarily part with their personal desktop printers and make sole use of more sustainable printing services.  

How to take part 

If you’d like to take part in this initiative, log a call with the IT Service Desk and someone will arrange to pick up your desktop printer. Printers will be redistributed by Scottish charity Reusing IT to low-income households, charities and voluntary organisations. If the printer is faulty, the parts will be recycled.  

Contact IT to donate your printer

Promote the campaign on your digital signage screens

If you manage digital signage in your area, feel free to download our promotional image to share. 

View and save digital signage

What’s the alternative?  

The UniPrint service allows staff to print, copy, scan and email from any UniPrint device (we have over 150).  

If you send a print job to the UniPrint queue, it can be securely collected from any UniPrint device. If you send a job to your desktop printer, it needs to be collected instantly from the one device.  

It’s more secure 

UniPrint uses Pull Print to ensure document confidentiality. Staff members log in with their ID card to access all print, copy, scan and email functions. This means documents are delivered only into the right hands with no risk of information being left unattended beside the printer.  

Actively monitored and supported 

If your desktop printer is faulty or broken, IT Services won’t know until you tell them. With UniPrint, they actively monitor toner and paper to make sure it’s always stocked up and working correctly.  

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