Wood and Paper Industries Getting Greener: Sustainability Study
By Rich Christianson | Posted: 07/16/2014 12:14PM
click image to zoom WASHINGTON – The U.S. wood and paper industries are continuing to make strides to be better environmental stewards of the planet, according to the 2014 Sustainability Report just released by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA).
The AF&PA said the 32-page report captures significant measurable progress that the wood products, pulp, paper and packaging industries are making toward achieving Better Practices Better Planet 2020 sustainable goals across the value chain. Sustainability goals covered in the report include increasing paper recovery for recycling, improving energy efficiency, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, promoting sustainable forestry practices, improving worker safety, and reducing water use.
Among the progress report's highlights:
• Paper recovery for recycling reached 63.5% in 2013; the Better Practices Better Planet goal is to achieve 70% recycled paper recovery by 2020.
• Two thirds of AF&PA members' energy use comes from carbon-neutral biomass, helping forest products companies to reduce the amount of energy they purchased by 8.8% since 2005. The 2020 goal is to reduce purchased energy by at least 10%.
• Green house gas emissions from wood and paper plants has declined 14.5% since 2005 putting industry well within reach of its goal to reduce green house gas emissions by at least 15% by 2020.
• AF&PA members' procurement of wood fiber from certified forestlands reached 29% last year. Procurement of wood fiber through certified programs reached 95%.
• AF&PA members are committed to making their operations safer and have a set goal of reducing the incidence rate of workplace injuries by 25% between 2006 and 2020. The incidence rate reported by members reflects a 24% improvement so far.
“We are proud to represent member companies who deliver on their sustainability commitments when manufacturing reusable and recyclable products that people across the country and around the world rely on every day,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman.
John Williams, president and CEO of Domtar and chairman of the AF&PA Board of Directors, said, “Through sustainable business practices, we are able to guarantee that both our industry’s products and the renewable resources used to make them will be plentiful, enabling them to improve quality of life for this generation and those to come.
About the Author
Rich ChristiansonRich Christianson is Associate Publisher and Editor at Large of Woodworking Network. During his 25+ years covering the wood products industry, Rich has toured hundreds of manufacturing plants throughout North America, Europe and Asia. His reporting has covered everything from the state of the industry and impact of wood imports to technology and environmental issues. In his current capacity he is responsible for editing the daily Woodworking Network Update newsletter and coordinating events including the annual Cabinets & Closets Conference & Expo and Canada’s biennial Woodworking Machinery & Supply Expo. He can be contacted at email@example.com or follow him on Google+.
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