Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 Sustainability Goals

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The industry’s sustainability goals focus on increasing paper recovery for recycling, improving energy efficiency, reducing greenhouse gas emissions, promoting sustainable forest management practices, improving safety and reducing water use.

Paper Recovery for Recycling

Exceed 70 percent rate of paper recovery for recycling by 2020

In 2015, the industry’s recovery rate for paper consumed in the U.S. was 66.8 percent.

Member Spotlight

2014 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY/GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTION

Verso Corporation’s Duluth Mill Recycling Recovery Program

The Verso Corporation Duluth Mill Recycling Recovery Program in Minnesota was designed to get cleaner recovered paper to the mill and support the local community in the process. In this innovative recycling program, participating nonprofit organizations collect clean, high-quality recyclable paper for the mill and receive funding for their organizations in return. Through 2014, the program had recovered 2,700 tons of paper and contributed $510,000 to more than 178 nonprofit groups.

Energy Efficiency

At least a 10 percent increase in members’ purchased energy efficiency from 2005 to 2020

Member purchased energy use per ton of production was 8.1 percent lower in 2014 compared to the baseline year of 2005.

Member Spotlight

2015 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY/GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTION

Seaman Paper Company’s Soft Steps Forward Initiative

As part of the Soft Steps Forward Initiative, Seaman Paper committed to decrease their purchased fuel and electricity dependency. Seaman Paper now produces 97 percent of their steam requirements from carbon-neutral biomass, and installed a backpressure turbine that runs on steam to meet a portion of their electricity needs. These measures helped decrease Seaman Paper’s total energy cost despite the sharp increases in oil and electricity costs over the past decade.

Greenhouse Gas EmissionsGoal Surpassed

At least a 15 percent reduction of our members’ greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 to 2020

In 2014, member greenhouse gas emissions, measured in carbon dioxide equivalents per ton of production, were 16 percent lower than in the 2005 baseline year.

Member Spotlight

2015 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR ENERGY EFFICIENCY/GREENHOUSE GAS REDUCTION

WestRock’s Covington Power Island Project

WestRock used carbon-neutral self generated and purchased biomass to generate clean renewable electricity at their Covington, Virginia paper mill. It has enabled the mill to put net power to the grid, greatly reduce coal use and greenhouse gas emissions, and decrease freshwater usage and the generation of wastewater, while providing a market for bark and other byproducts from the forest.

Wood Fiber Sourcing

Increase the amount of fiber procured from certified forestlands or through certified fiber sourcing programs in the U.S. from 2005 to 2020 and work to decrease illegal logging

Wood fiber sourced by members from third party certified forestlands increased from 23 percent in 2005 to 29 percent in 2014.

The amount of wood fiber members procured from certified sourcing programs increased from 87 percent in 2005 to 98 percent in 2014.

Our members also are continuing their efforts to combat illegal logging.

Member Spotlight

2014 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENT

Evergreen Packaging’s Evergreen Forest Certification

Evergreen Packaging developed Evergreen Forest Certification, a group certification program that allows multiple landowners to be certified under a single group certificate – a cost-effective way for landowners to have their forests certified to internationally recognized standards. Increased certification promotes sustainable forest practices and responds to the rising customer demand for paper and paperboard products that contain certified material. In its first year (2013), the program grew to include nearly 60 landowners comprising approximately 40,000 acres in North and South Carolina.

2014 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENT

WestRock’s Internal Fiber Supply Chain Certification Program

WestRock (then RockTenn) achieved its sustainability goal to achieve fiber chain-of-custody certification to credible third-party forestry certifications at all its North American wholly owned manufacturing facilities by 2020 in 2013, creating the single largest multisite fiber chain-of-custody certification in the U.S. paper industry. The company initiated a dual-purpose effort to bring all their non-certified facilities to the same certifications and combine all their existing certifications into one enterprise-wide multisite certificate.

SafetyGoal Surpassed

A vision for the industry of zero injuries and measuring progress toward that vision by further improving our incidence rate by 25 percent from 2006 to 2020

The 2014 member company recordable case incidence rate was 40.8 percent lower than in 2006. Although we have met the goal to reduce reportable incidents, we continue to look for new ways to achieve our aspirational goal of zero workplace injuries.

*OSHA Recordable Incidence Rate (# of Injuries and Illnesses x 200,000) / (Hours Worked by Employees)

Member Spotlight

2014 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR SAFETY

Expera Specialty Solutions’ Care Enough to Act Program

Expera Specialty Solutions’ Nicolet, Wisconsin mill introduced the Care Enough to Act program, a set of initiatives to identify safety hazards, reinforce safe behaviors, and put company-wide best practices into place. This atmosphere of cooperation, accountability, and self-discipline, combined with a focus on continuous improvement, led to all-time high safety improvements.

Water Use

Reduce water use in members’ pulp and paper mills by 12 percent from 2005 to 2020

AF&PA member pulp and paper mill water use in 2014 decreased by 6.5 percent below the 2005 baseline.

Member Spotlight

2014 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR WATER

Verso Corporation’s Escanaba Mill Water Reduction Initiative

The Verso Corporation Escanaba Mill in Michigan carried out a comprehensive program of repairs and optimization, resulting in measurable water reductions throughout the mill’s operations. These water conservation efforts also reduced costs required for heating, pumping and treating, water, and support ongoing resource conservation efforts at the mill.

2015 LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY AWARD FOR WATER

International Paper’s Pensacola Mill/Emerald Coast Utilities Authority (ECUA) Partnership Project

Through the partnership, International Paper’s containerboard mill in Pensacola, Florida receives treated effluent from ECUA that it uses in its industrial processes. By using reclaimed water to displace freshwater consumption, International Paper is reducing its water use at its Pensacola mill and protecting the local ecosystem, while ECUA has found a beneficial outlet for its treated effluent.