West Fraser commits to emissions reductions through science

West Fraser's Hinton Pulp plant in Hinton, Alberta, Canada.

VANCOUVER, BC, -- West Fraser Timber Co. Ltd. has committed to set science-based targets to achieve near-term greenhouse gas ("GHG") reductions across all its operations located in the United States, Canada, United Kingdom and Europe.

As the world's largest producer of lumber and oriented strand board and a leading manufacturer of other engineered wood and forest products, joining the Science Based Targets Initiative ("SBTi") demonstrates the Company's commitment to sustainability leadership and contribution to global climate action.

SBTi helps companies to set emission reduction targets in line with climate science and Paris Agreement goals. It promotes best practice in science-based target setting and independently assesses companies' targets. To accelerate corporate climate action, SBTi is focused on significant reductions in global emissions before 2030 and achieving net-zero emissions before 2050.

"Committing to science-based targets through our SBTi pledge is a natural next step for West Fraser," said Ray Ferris, president & CEO, West Fraser. "By committing to reduce emissions in line with climate science and align with the Paris Agreement goals by 2030, we are building on our solid legacy of sustainability performance of our products while enhancing the social, environmental and economic benefit in the communities in which we operate."

West Fraser has set the following specific GHG reduction targets:

  • Reduce direct emissions under West Fraser's operational control, Scope 1 GHG emissions, and indirect emissions from purchased energy, Scope 2 GHG emissions, by 46.2% by 2030 from a 2019 base year. These reductions are in line with a scenario which limits global temperature increases to 1.5°C, compared to pre-industrial levels.
  • Reduce all other indirect emissions within West Fraser's value chain, Scope 3 GHG emissions by 25% by 2030 from a 2020 base year. Scope 3 GHG reductions align with a scenario which limits global temperature increases to well-below 2°C, compared to pre-industrial levels.

To achieve these goals West Fraser will expend capital and adapt some operating practices, which will have broad benefits that improve our business. The Company's capital plans from 2022 forward include projects that will make reducing GHG emissions a priority. It is expected the average annual capital expenditures on GHG reduction projects to be approximately $50 million and fit within the overall capital budget going forward. West Fraser anticipates investing at least $400 million before 2030 to achieve our targets. 

The SBTi process is initiated with a letter of commitment and provides a period of two years to develop targets for SBTi validation prior to organizational communication and disclosure.


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Larry Adams | Editor

Larry Adams is a Chicago-based writer and editor who writes about how things get done. A former wire service and community newspaper reporter, Larry is an award-winning writer with more than three decades of experience. In addition to writing about woodworking, he has covered science, metrology, metalworking, industrial design, quality control, imaging, Swiss and micromanufacturing . He was previously a Tabbie Award winner for his coverage of nano-based coatings technology for the automotive industry. Larry volunteers for the historic preservation group, the Kalo Foundation/Ianelli Studios, and the science-based group, Chicago Council on Science and Technology (C2ST).