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U.S. Paper, Wood Product Companies Build on Sustainability Progress

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Underscoring the U.S. pulp, paper, packaging, tissue, and wood products manufacturing industry’s commitment to sustainability, the AF&PA, Washington, D.C., USA, this past week announced a greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction goal of 20% by the year 2020 under its Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 initiative.

The Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 sustainability project includes one of the most extensive sets of sustainability goals established for a U.S. manufacturing industry. In its 2016 Sustainability Report, AF&PA announced that GHG emissions from member facilities were reduced by 16%, surpassing the 15% reduction goal ahead of schedule. A detailed view of the industry’s measurable sustainability progress is available online.

"When it comes to advancing sustainability performance, our member companies continue to lead the way," said AF&PA President and CEO Donna Harman. "In 2014, their dedication resulted in measurable progress that our industry plans to build on in the coming years. Along that road, we will back public policies that support their ability to produce essential everyday products, while ensuring the renewable resources used to make them are readily available to future generations." 

AF&PA launched Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 in March 2011, with a suite of sustainability goals for improvement from a baseline of 2005: increase energy efficiency by at least 10%, reduce GHG emissions by at least 15%, promote sustainable forestry, improve the workplace incidence rate by 25% (baseline 2006), and reduce water use by 12%, while also committing to exceed a 70% rate of paper recovery for recycling. The target year to reach these goals is 2020. Having met the greenhouse gas goal early, AF&PA members set a new target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% from 2005 to 2020.    


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