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 user 2008-10-16 at 11:15:15 am Views: 96
  • #20369
    Xerox, Pitney Bowes pitch in with ‘green’ advice
    local titans in the office products industry, Pitney Bowes Inc. and
    Xerox Corp., are sharing some of their patents with the general
    public.Rather than revealing how to build a postage meter or a color
    copier, however, the patents might enable someone to remove toxic waste
    from soil and water more quickly or use less ink in a printer.

    companies are part of Eco-Patent Commons, a global effort to use
    existing technology to protect the environment.Other partners in
    Eco-Patent Commons are IBM Corp., Nokia, Bosch, DuPont, Sony and the
    Geneva-based World Business Council for Sustainable
    Development.Norwalk-based Xerox has pledged 11 patents to the venture.
    Those patents make it possible to trim the process of removing toxic
    waste from soil and water from years to months.According to Xerox, the
    traditional way to treat sites where organic solvents have spilled
    involves first drilling a well to pump out the ground water and treat
    it, then applying a vacuum to the soil to remove and treat vapors.

    2-PHASE Extraction system uses a stronger vacuum that simultaneously
    removes both the soil vapors and water – in the form of mist. Xerox
    said it can reduce overall remediation times by as much as 80
    percent.”We developed the 2-PHASE technology more than 15 years ago to
    help us remediate sites more quickly and at less expense,” said
    Patricia Calkins, Xerox’s vice president of environment, health and
    safety. “We believe it will be a valuable tool for others, such as the
    local dry cleaners or gas stations, who need to clean up volatile
    organic compounds.”"Xerox has made a long-term commitment to
    environmentally responsible operations,” she said. “The Eco-Patent
    Commons gives us the opportunity to share what we have learned.”

    pledges the patents to Eco-Patent Commons, which is a repository of
    patents and other intellectual property made available to anyone free
    of charge, Xerox spokeswoman Elissa Nesbitt said.”Essentially,
    companies retain ownership. They simply pledge not to assert their
    rights to prevent others from using the patents to provide
    environmental benefit,” she said.

    Stamford-based Pitney Bowes, a
    mailing systems and postage meter company, contributed patents for a
    product that makes mail scales last longer and protects them from
    overloads, and an ink jet printer that reduces waste ink and extends
    the life of ink cartridges.

    “We saw participation in Eco-Patent
    Commons as an opportunity to be leaders in promoting the spread of
    environmentally conscious technologies,” said Brian Lemm, senior
    corporate counsel at Pitney Bowes and a board member of Eco-Patent
    Commons. “We think it will provide access to technologies that we would
    not otherwise have access to.”

    Membership in Eco-Patent Commons
    has a positive public relations impact, said Mark Nowotarski, president
    of Markets, Patents & Alliances LLC, a patent consulting firm in
    Stamford.”By making these technologies available, they present the
    image to the public that they are supporting environmental causes,”
    said Nowotarski, a former corporate research and development fellow for
    Danbury-based Praxair Inc., a producer of industrial gases.

    Praxair, Nowotarski devised 17 patents for environmentally friendly
    technologies. He said he found a way to take freon out of the computer
    manufacturing process and invented a method to reduce by half the
    carbon dioxide emissions in the freezing of food. Nowotarski also
    worked on ways to clean municipal waste water with ozone instead of
    chlorine, he said.

    Pitney Bowes and Xerox are involved in
    environmentally sound practices. Pitney Bowes Inc. claimed to have
    saved almost $3 million in fuel costs over the past two years by
    cutting down its customer service trips. The company promotes car
    pools, telecommuting and shortened work weeks among its Fairfield
    County employees to save gasoline.

    At its world headquarters in
    Stamford, Pitney Bowes also invested several million dollars in
    renovations that included recycling of construction waste and the use
    of eco-friendly building materials and energy efficient lighting.Xerox,
    the world’s largest producer of copiers, is among a rising number of
    companies that are turning off lights in empty rooms and cutting back
    on excess copying and printouts to save energy.