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Draper president on the company’s green initiatives

Chris Broome talks "continuous improvement" in the company's approach to sustainability

Our biggest sustainability initiative is continuous improvement. We have been using the principles of continuous improvement/lean manufacturing to reduce waste for many years. Through this process, we have been able to make better use of our production space, reducing construction and heating/cooling expense. We have also placed a strong emphasis on integrating our manufacturing. Many of our lower-volume components are now made and/or finished on site, which increases our efficiency, reduces our inventory levels, and reduces the need to ship in components.

We have made lighting upgrades in our facilities over the past few years. We have LED lighting in our office and across much of our manufacturing space. Lighting in our manufacturing areas is motion sensitive to reduce electrical consumption.

We have also chosen to use finishing processes (powder coating) and printing processes (latex printing) which have significantly less environmental impact than other options.

Draper manufactures in the US, and we source many components and materials here. This reduces shipping required for many of our products and components.

Although we have drastically reduced scrap thanks to continuous improvement, we do still collect and recycle many tons of materials each year. We collect reusable packaging materials—including more than 100 inner and 100 outer cardboard cores per week—and return them to key suppliers like Phifer and Mermet. We also we also return and/or reuse skids. We send some back to the weavers along with the shade fabric packaging, and we reuse other skids to ship products.

Draper also promotes indoor air quality by making many products available that are certified by UL GREENGUARD for off-gassing. GREENGUARD certified products meet some of the toughest chemical emissions standards in the world. GREENGUARD Gold certification means the product has passed an even more rigorous standard, designed to protect more vulnerable populations such as children in education environments.

We were the first projection screen manufacturer to receive GREENGUARD Certification for projection screen fabrics. Our Matt White XT1000E, XT1000V, and Grey XH600V, front projection viewing surfaces are all GREENGUARD Gold-certified. Nearly every window shade fabric we offer is GREENGUARD Gold certified.

Click here to read our comprehensive green AV roundtable, from the September edition of Installation.