Ottawa (April 21, 2008) - When you make your living helping customers take advantage of renewable energy sources instead of living on the power grid, you want to be sure your own business practices match that mission. Yet this belief created a dilemma for DJ MacIntyre, president and founder of Le Boisé Alternatives, a builder that specializes in installing renewable energy sources throughout Quebec and Ontario, Canada.
Faxes are still used frequently in the construction business to submit bids, finalize contracts, place orders for materials and more. Yet MacIntyre knew that because fax machines are always on, drawing power whether they are in use or not, they don't exactly fit the definition of environmentally-friendly - or cost efficient. After calculating what it was costing him to run a fax machine 24 x 7, he began looking into an alternative of his own - Internet faxing. This investigation led him to MyFax.
"Keeping a light bulb on for 24 hours is expensive when you generate your own electricity," McIntyre says. "And a fax machine uses the equivalent of three compact light bulbs all the time. MyFax not only helps reduce my electricity costs - which is really important when you're generating every kilowatt hour yourself - it also helps me run my business more efficiently while being more environmentally responsible. What's not to like?"
According to the Energy Star ratings from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), a fax machine consumes more electricity than any other office equipment. It is part of a class of equipment the EPA refers to as "power vampires," and the renewable energy community calls a "phantom load" - units that waste roughly 10% of the grid's power on a continuous basis even when sitting idle. Fax paper also results in deforestation, water pollution during manufacturing, and waste issues.
"If you run a fax machine 24 x 7, you create 80 Kg of greenhouse gas per year in our area," McIntyre says. "That's a lot considering how infrequently the fax machine is actually used."
Mobility was another factor that led MacIntyre into investigating Internet Fax Services.
He says his customer base ranges from Quebec City to Kingston, Ontario, an area of roughly 366,600 square miles. Since he is the only licensed renewable energy contractor within this vast region in Quebec, and one of very few to his knowledge in Ontario, he is often away from the office (and the fax machine) for days or weeks at a time. MyFax gives him the ability to send and receives faxes via his laptop or Blackberry anywhere he happens to be - even in remote, off-the-grid locations.
MacIntyre's selection of MyFax over other Internet fax service providers was driven largely by the company's ratings in reviews on sites such as TopTenREVIEWS.com.
"Everywhere I went, whether the parties were users or professional reviewers, MyFax came out on top," he says. "And after opening my account I found out why."
He says that signing up only took a few minutes, and his new fax number was operational within a half hour.
"The nice thing is I didn't have to download any special software," MacIntyre says. "When a fax comes in, I receive an e-mail notification on my laptop and Blackberry. I can preview it and decide whether to open it or respond to it now or later, even if I'm in the deep woods. Having the fax come in as a PDF rather than in some proprietary format makes it easier to see, and to store electronically if I need to. It's extremely convenient."
When he looks at hard numbers for results, MacIntyre has a unique perspective. It isn't just about saving time. Due to the nature of his business he knows what the real costs are.
"If I had to build a power system strictly to run a fax machine 24 hours a day, it would cost around $4,000 to $5,000 in infrastructure costs, without accounting for maintenance," he says. "That electricity is now being re-directed to other appliances and devices in the house. I'm conserving time, money, and the environment. It's a great combination."
MyFax is the fastest growing Internet fax service used by individuals, small, medium and large businesses to send and receive faxes using existing email accounts or the web. MyFax offers services in North America and Europe, including the United Kingdom to industries recognized among the fastest growing adopters of internet fax including finance, insurance, real estate, healthcare, transportation and government. More than 15,000 new customers subscribe to MyFax each month. Additional information is available at www.myfax.com and www.myfax.uk.com.