Going Green With Eco Friendly Storage Solutions
by Christina Appleworth
There are many benefits to going green when storing materials and goods. A green policy for storage means that you can use materials that are ethically sourced, and are able to last a long time without being replaced. A well designed and manufactured storage solution works in this way to conserve space, while still ensuring that you have secured items. Options for eco friendly storage include everything from making the most of recycled and reused materials, through to finding solutions that make the best use of available spaces and structures, either within warehouses or within the home. Some of these solutions are expanded upon below:
1 - Recycled Materials
More and more companies are using recycled materials when they produce their storage containers, whether that be for pallets or for stillages. A large number of pallets are now made from high density polyethylene (HPDE), which is the most frequently used source of recycled plastic, and represents a durable and more environmentally sound alternative to new manufactures. Stillage cages that use repurposed scrap metal and steel also share these benefits.
2 - Reused Materials
As well as recycling materials, it is possible to reuse materials and storage containers. This is one of the easiest ways in which to have an eco friendly approach to storage, and basically involves sourcing containers on a second hand basis, rather than investing in new ones. Pallets, racks, stillages and cages can be found in excellent condition, and at a cheaper price than buying new. In this way, it is worth checking with storage and moving companies to see what options are available.
3 - Collapsible and Modular Materials
Some of the best storage solutions available on the market are defined by their flexibility in terms of how and when they can be used. Pallets and stillages are particularly useful in this sense for being expanded or folded depending on the kind of goods that need to be stored. In this way, you only use the space you need at any one time, and cut down on the amount of waste involved with buying too many materials and containers.
4 - Efficient Warehousing and Logistics
Eco friendly storage solutions arguably derive from efficient warehousing procedures. The best warehouses will have systems in place that ensure that all storage areas are optimised to make the best use of space, from collapsible stillages through to double deep stacking, and longspan shelving. It is also worth investigating whether a company has an environmental management system (EMS) in place to cut down on waste, and that uses the best materials.
5 - Personal Storage
Green ideas can also be extended to the use of storage materials and solutions within the home. As with warehousing, an emphasis should be placed on making the most of space, and not simply filling garages and sheds with boxes and boxes of plastic materials. Recycled materials can be used for plastic boxes, while installing metal stillage cages can help to safely contain gas canisters and sensitive materials. Collapsible shelving, and shelving cubes, which can be adjusted depending on the size of their contents, are also useful options. When combined with the use of recycled wood, and low voltage lighting in storage areas, it is possible to have a more efficient set of options for home storage.