Over-Packaging is a Low-Hanging Fruit to Help the Environment [Updated]

Over-packaging photo

Over-packaging might seem fairly benign to some, but when you stop and think about how many millions (billions!) of items are wastefully packaged, how these almost-empty big boxes take up more space than necessary in shipping trucks, forcing them to make more trips for the same amount of cargo... It all adds up to a huge waste of materials and energy that could fairly easily be avoided without much negative consequences.

Dell over-packaging photo

At a time when companies all want to seem green, packaging is a low-hanging fruit that shouldn't be under-estimated. Why has progress been so slow? We'd think that record-high energy and material prices would be enough, but inertia is a powerful force.

It seems like packaging needs to be put back on the map, because it's not just about litter and landfills, it's also about deforestation, air quality, and global warming.

Update: The package came from Dell, and one of their representatives wrote this in the comments. It's good that they're paying attention, but if they really are serious about packaging, this story shows a serious flaw in their process and they should not just "rely on continued vigilance from customers like you to let us know which areas require our attention", but rather find a process that works.

::Dell Still Ships Tiny Items In Massive Boxes

See also: ::Wal-Mart Introduces Packaging Scorecard, ::Secondary Packaging – The Silent Killer of the Environment, ::TreeHugger Picks: Smart Packaging Design