Join us on Thursday January 26th as we bring in 2012 with a breakfast tour of the Urban Impact Recycling Facility in New Westminster.
Event Features include:
- PowerPoint presentation with an overview the recycling industry and what you can do to maximize your recycling diversion rates and implement recycling best practices.
- Tour of the sorting plant which automatically sorts cans from plastic, varying grades of plastic and two dimensional waste from three dimensional waste.
- Learn about Waste Audit Reports which can reveal unknown opportunities to cut your carbon footprint and increase your diversion rate.
- Light breakfast included: Muffins, Croissants, Pastries, Coffee, Tea
This question, posed decades ago by the earliest pallet industry pioneers such as the late Bill Sardo, still comes up today. The correct answer depends on how we define “pallet.”
Pallet-like structures have been used as bases for at least a few hundred years for applications such as the safe stacking and stabilization of kegs. Let’s look at the Dictionary.com definition, which describes a pallet as “a small, low, portable platform on which goods are placed for storage or moving, as in a warehouse or vehicle.”
If one is to follow the definition at Dictionary.com, then these structures were pallets in that they were used for storage, and they did indeed predate the lift truck. They did not, however, facilitate movement of goods, which most professional definitions for pallets would prescribe to be an important part of the definition. The appearance of unit-load bases designed to move goods takes us to to the very late 1800s. The predecessor of the wooden pallet was the wooden (and iron or steel) skid, which consisted of stringers or legs fastened to a top deck. It first appeared in American factories in conjunction with the low lift truck. A crude low lift hand truck was invented in 1887 that could elevate a skid a few inches by manual means. A more durable, all-steel low lift truck design was introduced in 1909. Early lift trucks had a lift platform. The appearance of forks came later. Skids were classified as “live,” containing casters on the base for manual positioning of the skid, or “dead” if they did not have casters.
Be sure to mark Thursday October 15, 2009 on your calendar for the Dinner Speaker, Ruth Abramson, and “how to weave sustainability into your purchasing practices.”
Looking for ways to go green? To make the sustainability shift in your organization? To address the complex demands of going carbon neutral with your peers?
Here’s a quiz. Customer A buys a pallet rated for 100 trips, but the pallet is lost after the fourth trip. It ends up at a pallet recycler, and it goes into a grinder or is shipped overseas as an export pallet, so it is no longer usable in local applications.
Company B buys a light-weight pallet classified for single use, but through proper handling and effective pallet management, it lasts for 12 trips before being sent to a recycler for processing.
Which pallet is most ‘environmentally friendly’?
While the examples above do not provide enough information to make that determination, the point is obvious. If pallet management and effective secondary markets created by the pallet recycling industry are not fully utilized, and pallets are lost or damaged prematurely, then we fail to reap the maximum environmental benefit of the wooden pallet. If they are effectively reused for multiple trips, then we will easily exceed those expectations.