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 2016, the industry’s recovery rate for paper consumed in the U.S. was 67.2 percent.
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.
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. In 2017, members committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from their facilities even further — aiming for a 20 percent reduction by 2020.
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.
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.
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.