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Just The Paper Facts


Print and Paper The Facts

Examples of Changes in Corporate Messaging Related to Print and Paper

Since early 2012, Two Sides North America has engaged with over 135 companies to remove negative environmental claims used to promote electronic services over paper-based communications. To date, over 75 companies, including many of the Fortune 100, have changed their corporate messaging about print and paper. The key reasons for challenging claims are outlined in a Two Sides Fact Sheet titled “Why challenge anti-paper environmental marketing claims?” available on our website at

The changes can be summarized as follows:

  • Removal of claims such as “go paperless – go green”, “save trees”, “help the environment”, “help save the planet”.
  • Removal of images of leaves, trees, the globe and others suggesting environmental benefits.
  • Replacing the word “paperless” with “online”, “e-statement”, “e-billing”, or similar wording.
  • Focusing the message on the practicality and convenience of electronic services, rather than environmental benefits.


Below are some of the companies that have collaborated with Two Sides North America, as well as examples of corporate messages before and after discussions with various companies.


Following several discussions with Starbucks’ Chief Sustainability Officer, the company worked with Two Sides to changes its environmental claims on napkins and paper bags used at their coffee shops across the nation. Claims of “saving trees” were removed to make way for a factual claim about recycled content in the products.

After many attempts to engage with Verizon, Two Sides issued the blog on the left, supported by a social media campaign to raise awareness about misleading claims. Verizon subsequently removed the claims. To help support Two Sides educational efforts, join us as a member company – go to

Consolidated Edison is a key power provider in the New York State area with annual revenues of over $12 billion. The envelope on the left was used to send customers their bills every month. After many discussions with them about the misleading nature of the message, the company removed the claim.

BMO collaborated with Two Sides to change and remove all negative claims related to the use of paper, including terms such as “paperless” and “paper clutter”. Before and after shown below: To help support Two Sides educational efforts, join us as a member company – go to

Print and Paper The Facts

When students with Canadian government loans logged into their online accounts, they were faced with “Go Electronic. Save a Tree.” Two Sides worked together with the Canadian National Student Loan Service to remove the claims and replaced them with factual messaging.

Before and after shown below:

Mediacom Communications is the fifth largest cable television company in the U.S. with revenues of over $450 million. The company collaborated with Two Sides in 2015 to change and remove all negative marketing claims related to print and paper.To help support Two Sides educational efforts, join us as a member company – go to

Print and Paper The Facts


“One of the benefits of our relationship with Two Sides has been the opportunity to reflect on how we communicate our efforts. This caused us to review Sprint’s messaging about electronic media across multiple touch points.”

Alan Anglyn, Director – IT Care & Billing Services Business Management

“Our two organizations are very close on our approach to paper and its role within the Finance Industry. We also agree that the (e-billing) statements in place were too simplistic about this positive impact and would benefit with being re-worded to be more specific. The HSBC global sustainability team has agreed to draft some new wording which we will share with Two Sides for review prior to issue as guidelines to our marketing and communications teams.”

Andrew Woodroffe – Senior Project Manager & Sustainability Leader

“Regions is committed to providing accurate information to its customers and to the public generally, and this commitment extends to our marketing materials. We take very seriously our obligation to assure that our marketing materials do not include misleading or inaccurate information, whether about environmental claims or otherwise. As a result of our discussions with Two Sides, we have revised the environmental message on our website and would welcome any other comments related to the environmental marketing of our products.”

A. Lee Hardegree, III – Assistant General Counsel

“We have undertaken a review of our existing customer messaging regarding online billing that will, among other things, likely lead to a de-emphasis of environmental impacts, with the anticipated focus instead being on customer convenience. We thank Two Sides for bringing these concerns to our attention.”

Kenneth J. Langan – Assistant General Counsel

“Following receipt of a letter from Two Sides, SCE reconsidered its messaging and determined that cost savings is the most significant driver for our campaign. As such, we decided to discontinue statements regarding environmental benefits of electronic billing, and to focus on the cost savings associated with electronic billing.”

Jessica Lim – Principal Manager, Offer Management and Marketing

“We have reviewed your proposed modifications to our messaging, and in response, we have made the following changes to our online Billing Centre Promotion:

  1. Removed all references to “paperless”
  2. Removed “Go Paperless” on the keyboard in the image used on our website
  3. Removed all references to “Go Green”
  4. Replaced “Help the environment” in the copy with “Save on paper invoice fees”…”

Ramsey Mansour – Vice President, Corporate Strategy and Marketing To help support Two Sides educational efforts, join us as a member company – go to

Stay Safe! Speak Up When you See Risky Behavior.

The Power of One

Just because we educate employees on how to escalate a concern, it does not mean they will have the courage to do so.  We need to appreciate the powerful force of social influence. In this video, David Maxfield and Joseph Grenny explain the power of having just one person in a group speak up in dissent.  They suggest that we express our disagreement using polite doubt.

Leading Change

How can we get employees to speak up when they see risky behavior?  Here are some actions we can take to reduce an organization’s Power Distance Index:

  1. Set a clear expectation that everyone(even the most junior employee) is empowered to speak up whenever something doesn’t seem right.
  2. Look for opportunities to positively reinforce this behavior when it is observed. Communicate the importance of doing this by citing examples or telling stories of others who spoke up – thus preventing a decision or action that otherwise would have resulted in a negative outcome.
  3. Be a role model for how to receive feedback. Publicly praise anyone who voices a concern.  This is especially critical if this person questions a decision or expresses an opinion that is counter to the majority view.
  4. Provide training on how to raise and quickly escalate a concern, à la the crew resource training method used by the airline industry.  Standardize the way employees can respectively disagree or pose a question when there is a hierarchy that may inhibit the behavior to speak up. Teach the concept of disagreeing through polite doubt.
  5. Enlist opinion leaders in the effort to make “speaking up” an accepted and expected behavior.  These are people who are “respected and connected” in the organization. However, they may not have any formal authority. If you can get this group to speak up, it sends a signal to others that it is an acceptable norm.
  6. Facilitate a discussion about this topic in natural work groups.  Have them commit to one another that (a) they will speak up and (b) they will listen when anyone questions a decision or believes that situation is not safe.

We cannot achieve a zero event work place unless we create an environment where employees are watching out for one another.  But simply watching is not enough.  We need everyone to be comfortable enough to take action and speak up when they see anyone taking an unnecessary risk – every time!

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!

As the holiday season is upon us, we find ourselves reflecting on the past year and on those who have helped us shape our business. We value our relationship with you and look forward to working with you in the year to come.

For Miller employees to enjoy the holidays with friends and family, we will be closed December 23rd, 26th and January 2nd.

We wish you a Merry Christmas and a New Year filled with Peace and Prosperity!

Best wishes,

Your Friends at Miller Mechanical


Real versus Artificial Christmas Trees – An Environmental Perspective

Dovetail Partners provides great information on making your holiday habits environmentally-friendly

 (Mpls, MN) – Each year during the holiday season people begin decorating and buying gifts. For those that celebrate Christmas, an important decision is choosing a tree. This includes deciding if it will be a real or artificial Christmas tree. How does your decision impact the environment? Cost, convenience, and personal preference are all important considerations, but so too is the environmental impact.

Research has shown that locally-sourced natural trees have less environmental impact than artificial ones. An independent Life Cycle Analysis (LCA) study released by the Montreal firm Elliposos [1] determined that real trees have less overall impact in terms of distribution, disposal, and average carbon emissions than their artificial counterparts. The LCA method allows for evaluation of potential environmental impacts of a product (or service) over its entire life cycle and takes raw material processing, manufacturing, transportation, distribution, use, reuse, recycling and disposal impacts into consideration. [2]
When it comes to artificial trees, the key to achieving environmental gains lies in the amount of time they are kept and reused. Average households replace an artificial tree about every six years.  Evidence shows that, in general, artificial trees need to be reused for at least 20 years if they are to compare favorably with natural trees.
“It makes sense to choose the tradition that suits your needs while also considering the best environmental practices,” says Kathryn Fernholz, Executive Director of Dovetail Partners, a Minneapolis-based environmental group. “If you choose a real tree, you can get to know your local grower and recycle your tree at the end of the holiday season. If you choose an artificial tree, make sure to reuse it for as many years as possible.  Whichever route you go, your goal can be to pass the tradition of selecting a tree – or even the tree itself – down to the next generation!”
Additional environmentally-friendly measures you can take during the holidays include use of recycled and recyclable wrapping paper and greeting cards, use of LED holiday bulbs; and reuse and recycling of real trees and other decorations at the end of the season such as through collection programs, composting, wood chipping or planting.



[1] The study can be found here: Couillard, Sylvain; Bage et. all. “Comparative Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) of Artificial VS Natural Christmas Tree.” Ellipsos. February 2009.
[2] To learn more about LCA, read Dovetail’s report, “Life Cycle Analysis: A Key to Better Environmental Decisions.”