About thirty minutes east of The Home Depot’s headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia is the town of Conyers, where Pratt Industries is based. As the largest manufacturer of 100% recycled paper packaging in the world, Pratt supplies The Home Depot with its assortment of moving and storage boxes. Each year, The Home Depot sells approximately 80 million of these boxes, all of which are made with 100 percent post-consumer recycled content.
If you’ve ever purchased one of these moving and storage boxes at The Home Depot, you may be interested to learn that the sustainable impact goes farther than the recycled materials in the box itself. If you follow the manufacturing trail upstream from the product on the shelf at your local The Home Depot stores, you’ll find that Pratt’s commitment to the environment extends far beyond recycled materials.
Every moving and storage box sold by The Home Depot throughout the Southeast, is manufactured using clean energy from Pratt Industries’ state-of-the art facility in Conyers, Georgia.
This facility features a fluidized bed gasifier, which converts landfill-diverted materials – including residues from Pratt’s own paper-making operations – into clean energy. This waste-to-energy facility provides enough power and steam to fuel Pratt’s turbine generator, mill and corrugators, the machines that turn rolls of paper into sheets of corrugated board before they become moving boxes.
Every day, Pratt’s Clean Energy Plant:
- Displaces 245 tons of greenhouse gas emissions
- Converts 750-800 tons of materials that would previously have gone to landfill into fuel
- Generates 7 megawatts of electricity, reducing dependence on the local power grid by 25-30%
- Produces roughly 220,000 lbs. of steam per hour, which is 100% of the steam required to power Pratt’s manufacturing processes
It’s worth noting that the majority of fuels being converted to energy at Pratt’s clean energy plant would otherwise enter Atlanta area landfills or be burned at different construction sites throughout the metro Atlanta area. In an additional step towards circularity, all ferrous, non-ferrous metals and PVC are removed from the residues prior to gasification and sold to other end-use processors.
Landfill diversion is a key organizational priority for Pratt Industries.
Each year, the company reports its Diversion Rate, which measures the amount of reduction, reuse, and recovery of waste streams throughout the manufacturing process, thereby limiting the use of landfills. In 2020, Pratt reported an overall Diversion Rate of 82 percent, with its converting operations diverting 91 percent and corrugating operations diverting 95 percent of their respective waste streams.
Since Pratt’s clean energy plant in Conyers became operational in 2009, two natural gas-fired boilers on site have been idled. Meanwhile, the company continues to invest in technologies and systems designed to minimize resources, including five (soon to be six) 100% recycled paper mills. In addition to its massive paper recycling efforts, Pratt is also seeking to reduce harmful plastics by investing in the production of non-nylon stretch film and Bubble Wrap.
When you purchase a 100% recycled moving and storage box from Pratt Industries at The Home Depot, sustainability is part of the package.