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IT Know-How: Keep your emails ‘green’

20 Jun 2012

Small suggestions to make a big impact.

green signature

Did you know that there are several simple things that you can do within your emails to have a greener impact on the environment? Saving on paper and ink toner waste from printers can all add up to make a big difference.

Don't print off emails unless you really need to

This will save on paper wastage and also ink toner from the printer.

You could always add a line to your own signature to remind others too:

"Please consider the environment before printing this email."

Configure Outlook so that it does not include the signature block when replying or forwarding to University of Manchester colleagues

If emails are then printed out, this can save a whole sheet of paper (or more) in repeated email signatures in between email conversations.

To stop including a signature automatically for messages that you reply to or forward:

  • In a new message, on the Message tab, in the Include group, click Signature, and then click Signatures.
  • Note: You can also access the signature options that are available on the Message tab after you click Reply, Reply to All, or Forward in an open message.
  • On the E-mail Signature tab, under Choose default signature, in the Replies/forwards list, select none.
  • Click OK.

Format your signature so it contains all relevant contact information using fewer lines, to reduce the amount of paper space and ink used when emails must be printed

If everyone adopted this signature format the space saving could be considerable when several signatures are added to a conversation.

New example signature template:

Forename Surname | Job Title | Department or Unit | Directorate or Faculty | Name of Building, Room Number | The University of Manchester | Oxford Road | Manchester | M13 9PL | Tel +44(0) 161 XXX XXXX |

Thanks to Corrina Allcock (Directorate of Estates and Facilities) for this suggestion as part of the Green Impact Team initiative.

View the Knowledge Base article for more information on: