At the heart of PEFC is our ambition to enable smallholders to access forest certification, independent of region and socioeconomic condition. But there is more than can be done. This was highlighted last week at the first meeting of Standards Revision Working Group 2, responsible for the revision of PEFC's Group Certification Standard and the development of a set of requirements for certification bodies operating audits in forest management. The importance of strengthening the management system approach and of clearly describing the interaction between group members and group management was emphasized by representatives from the accreditation community. While the current standard already responds to these issues, their further development will support the use and expand the application of the standard.
Prof. Stefan Doerr and Dr Cristina Santin from Swansea University’s College of Science carried out a detailed analysis of global and regional data on fire occurrence, severity and its impacts on society. Their research, published in Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B, examined a wide range of published data arising from satellite imagery, charcoal records in sediments and isotope-ratio records in ice cores, to build up a picture of wildfire in the recent and more distant past.
Most living organisms adapt their behavior to the rhythm of day and night. Plants are no exception: flowers open in the morning, some tree leaves close during the night. Researchers have been studying the day and night cycle in plants for a long time: Linnaeus observed that flowers in a dark cellar continued to open and close, and Darwin recorded the overnight movement of plant leaves and stalks and called it "sleep". But even to this day, such studies have only been done with small plants grown in pots, and nobody knew whether trees sleep as well. Now, a team of researchers from Austria, Finland and Hungary measured the sleep movement of fully grown trees using a time series of laser scanning point clouds consisting of millions of points each.
Forest conversions and trees outside forests: two of the nine areas to be given specific consideration during the revision of the PEFC Sustainable Forest Management standard. This is one of the key outcomes of last week’s meeting of the Standards Revision Working Group 1 – the Working Group (WG) responsible for the revision of our Sustainable Forest Management standard. Taking place in Geneva, Switzerland, 35 participants from around the world and covering all relevant stakeholder groups contributed their knowledge and experience as we kicked-off of the standard revision process. The group discussed what they expect a future Sustainable Forest Management standard to deliver over the next years, as well as carrying out a detailed analysis of the existing requirements.
The work has included development of a new depot in Snodland, the installation of new balers at its Snodland, Blackburn and Glasgow depots and an additional weighbridge in Nottingham to ease traffic flow into and out of the depot there. The new Snodland depot in Kent is processing locally-sourced paper and cardboard for recycling at the Group’s new Smurfit Kappa Townsend Hook mill on the same site, which operates a state-of-the-art 5m lightweight paper machine producing approximately 250,000 tonnes of quality containerboard material per year. The depot will also supply recycled paper grades not used at Townsend Hook to other mills. Smurfit Kappa Recycling has constructed the new depot on part of the mill site freed up by its redevelopment, installing a new Bollegraaf HBC 120 baler in a new facility designed to operate efficiently and safely.
Starting last summer, staff at the Sonoco Recycling facility in Savannah took a hard look at its business operations, in terms of both cost and sustainability. Working together, the team realized that by diverting dry waste material from their normal waste streams and taking it to a waste-to-energy service provider every month, they could save money and lessen their environmental impact. Now, only wet or bulky waste goes in the Dumpster, and all other waste is converted to energy via hauling trips that are often combined with normal hauling operations to optimize freight cost and lessen the facility’s carbon footprint. “This process change is a first for a Sonoco Recycling location,” said Mike Pope, general manager and president, Sonoco Recycling. “The plant is doing a great job capturing a large amount of waste for recovery in waste-to-energy programming, and their improvements have positive implications for both sustainability and cost savings.”
Forests close to urban areas, like all other types of forest areas, need to be properly managed in terms of both production and environmental considerations. One problem is that local residents have not known what is being done. In the Höör forestry operations area, Södra is now opening the door to improved dialogue. The aim is to provide information about planned activities, and to explain why various measures are carried out. In addition, local residents and other interested parties will be able to express their views and ask questions. "An unannounced change can often be perceived as something undesirable, especially when it affects the local area. Forestry measures are undertaken with a purpose and they lead to change, sometimes in several stages. By explaining why the measures are being carried out, the outcome will be more positive," says Johan Johnsson, Area Manager of the Höör forestry operations area.
“While a number of uniquely different forest certification systems are used around the world they: 1- have much in common; 2- share many basic objectives; 3- provide an additional measure of commitment to sustainable forestry; and, 4- are effective tools for supporting a responsible marketplace.” Two Sides, the initiative exploding the myths and setting out the facts about print media's sustainability in a clear and concise manner, has brought together facts from a variety of sources illustrate just these points. See below for a snapshot of some of their findings: “There are dozens of forest certification programs around the world. Two programs – the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC) - account for the vast majority of certified forests and chain-of-custody certificates. These two programs operate around the world.”
Cascades is proud to announce that by the end of its 2013-2015 Sustainable Development Plan, the company gave a second life to 76% of the residual materials generated by its plants, exceeding its target of 71%. Over this three-year period, a total of 1.4 million tonnes of residuals were recovered. "Cascades was founded with the aspiration to re-imagine commodity product manufacturing by prioritizing the use of recycled fibre. This business model allows us to divert millions of tonnes of used paper and cardboard from landfill each year. For us to have the smallest ecological footprint possible, we also chose to focus on giving a new lease of life to our own residual materials," explained Mario Plourde , the company's President and Chief Executive Officer. The bales of used paper bought by Cascades to serve as raw material can contain up to 10% of contaminants (plastic, metal, glass, etc). The company must therefore manage a large amount of diverse residual materials. Other categories of residuals are also derived from Cascades' manufacturing process: mixed sludge and deinking sludge. These two by-products are now used for different purposes: animal bedding, liming material for land farming, fill layer in cardboard production, restoration of damaged sites and capping material for sanitary landfill sites.
A dramatic exception to the rule played out Thursday as the council considered the adoption of a 5-cent fee on paper and plastic bags at most stores. The 28-20 vote to approve the bill came only after a fierce debate centering on lofty themes of regressive taxation, income inequality and environmental policy. “This is a very, very expensive place where people are struggling to survive,” Councilman Mathieu Eugene, a Brooklyn Democrat whose district includes parts of Crown Heights and Flatbush. Councilman Barry Grodenchik, a Queens Democrat, called it “one of the most regressive pieces of legislation to ever come before this council.”
The Myths covered are: •European forests are shrinking •Planted forests are bad for the environment •Paper is bad for the environment •Paper production is a major cause of global greenhouse gas emissions •Only recycled paper should be used •Print and Paper is a wasteful product •Electronic communication is more environmentally friendly than paper-based communication •Digital is always the preferred means of communication •Packaging is wasteful and unnecessary Some of the key facts about paper's sustainability highlighted are: •Between 2005 and 2015, European forests grew by an area the size of Switzerland - that's 1,500 football pitches every day! •Europe recycles 72% of its paper •84% of the industry’s raw materials come from Europe •Between 2005 and 2013, the CO2 emissions of the European pulp and paper industry were reduced by 22% •56% of the industry’s total primary annual energy consumption is biomass-based
The American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) today announced that 66.8 percent of paper consumed in the U.S. was recovered for recycling in 2015. U.S. paper recovery rate statistics are available at http://www.paperrecycles.org/statistics. “Industry efforts, the voluntary, market-driven recovery system, and the millions of Americans who make the decision to recycle every day have helped to keep U.S. paper recovery at continuously high levels,” said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman.
It's a common assumption: if paper comes from trees, then using paper must be bad for forests, right? Wrong. American-manufactured paper actually benefits our nation's forestland and is a driving force in maintaining it for future generations. "It may seem counterintuitive, but the responsible production and use of paper is sustainable and helps keep forest land in the U.S. as forests," said Kate McGlynn, Product Environmental Steward for Boise Paper. "Using wood-based products like office paper actually gives American landowners incentive to sustainably manage their forests." If you're striving to "go green" this Earth Day, here's some good news: your office paper is green, as long as it comes from a responsible producer. Here are a handful of ways that paper use and production can support a healthy, forested landscape for future generations.
Holland Litho Printing Service has joined Two Sides North America, the non-profit organization that promotes and encourages the responsible production, use, and sustainability of print and paper. “We welcome Holland Litho Printing Service to the growing network of Two Sides member companies and our team looks forward to working with them to help spread the positive word about the sustainability of print and paper,” says Two Sides North America President, Phil Riebel.
As reported recently in the Bangor Daily News, John Halle (CEO of Cate Street Capital) has formally dismissed the libel lawsuit that Cate Street Capital and Halle had initiated against Verle Sutton almost two years ago. This claim of libel had resulted from an article in the May 2014 issue of The Reel Time Report, written by Sutton, in which Cate Street Capital and State of Maine officials were strongly criticized for actions they took that related to the Great Northern Paper mills in northern Maine. Industry Intelligence, the publisher of Reel Time, had also been named as a defendant in this lawsuit. Industry Intelligence and John Halle reached a settlement earlier in 2016. In response to John Halle choosing to end the lawsuit against Sutton, and the Industry Intelligence settlement, Verle Sutton has issued the following statement: I am grateful to family and friends who have been so supportive during the last two years as we fought through the groundless lawsuit that John Halle and Cate Street Capital initiated against me for authoring “The Maine Problem.” The legal costs incurred during the last two years have been substantial, and the time our family lost was unfortunate. However, our losses pale in comparison to the damage that has been inflicted on the East Millinocket and Millinocket communities and, in fact, on all of northern Maine. These communities and this region were misled by state officials and Cate Street about the viability of the restarted Great Northern Paper mills.
The Canadian forest products industry is pledging to help Canada move to a low-carbon economy by removing 30 megatonnes (MT) of CO2 per year by 2030 — more than 13% of the Canadian government’s emissions target. The “30 by 30” Climate Change Challenge was issued today by the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC), making the forest sector the first to voluntarily contribute to the federal government’s climate goals. Canada has signed the Paris agreement on climate change and is now promising to reduce emissions by 30%, the equivalent of cutting 225 MT of CO2 a year by 2030. The forest sector has a solid record of reducing greenhouse gases from its manufacturing processes. Since 1990 for example, Canada’s pulp and paper industry has reduced GHG emissions by about 66%.