In a converted corn ethanol plant 25 min from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA, four-story tanks of organic fiber waste from International Paper Co.'s Cedar River containerboard mill are being converted into fuel-grade ethanol this week.
Boise Inc's International Falls, Minn., USA, mill is celebrating its 100-year history, which is being written in a book titled "The Mill at the Falls–100 Years of Papermaking on the Border" by author Bill Beck.
Most college students in a new nationwide poll rank themselves as environmentally conscious and two-thirds believe going paperless helps the environment, but they draw the line at electronic copies for key documents, especially when it comes to college diplomas.
Total U.S. printing and writing paper shipments increased 10% in April compared with April 2009—the sixth consecutive year-over-year (YOY) increase and the third double-digit YOY increase.
AbitibiBowater Inc., Montreal, Que., Canada, this week announced that the company and certain of its U.S. and Canadian subsidiaries currently under creditor protection have filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware amendments to its plans of reorganization as well as related disclosure documents.
Domtar's Dryden, Ont., Canada, mill will receive C$22.7 million in federal funding under the pulp and paper green transformation program (PPGTP) for two capital improvement projects that will increase the mill's operational efficiencies and its production of green, clean electricity.
Fraser Papers Inc., Toronto, Ont., Canada, reported this week that its subsidiary Fraser N.H. LLC, has reached an agreement to sell substantially all of its assets to an investment fund managed by MerchantBanc LLC, of Manchester, N.H., USA.
Georgia-Pacific, Atlanta, GA., USA, reported this week that it has completed the purchase of Grant Forest Products' oriented strand board (OSB) facilities at Allendale and Clarendon, S.C., as well as the facility at Englehart, Ont., Canada, and the associated facility at Earlton, Ont.
The board of management of the Holmen Group, Sweden, has given the go-ahead for a EUR 238 million investment for a new recovery boiler at its Iggesund Mill in Sweden, which will considerably strengthen its flagship product Invercote.
NewPage Corp., Miamisburg, Ohio, USA, has announced a new On Paper podcast series episode featuring Maria Rodale, chairman and CEO of Rodale Inc., a leading multimedia company with a focus on health, wellness, and the environment.
SKF, Gothenburg, Sweden, a global supplier of bearings, seals, mechatronics, services, and lubrication systems as well as maintenance services, engineering consultancy, and training, this past week signed a framework agreement with the State Forestry Administration in China to plant new forests in remote areas of the country.
Twin Rivers Paper Co., South Portland, Maine, USA, this past week officially opened its Edmundston, N.B., Canada, pulp mill and cogeneration facility that it acquired earlier this month from Fraser Papers.
VoIPcare Technology, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA, this past week announced the start of a six-month trial period with members of the pulp and paper industry to evaluate the benefits and ROI associated with the use of VoIPcare's qMetrix for Transportation software product.
A new report titled The Future of Active and Intelligent Packaging in Food and Drinks: Enabling Technologies, Optimized Consumption, and Multi-sensory Features has been published by Reportlinker.com.
Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., Chicago, Ill., USA, announced this week that it has reached a resolution with Mariner Investment Group LLC and Senator Investment Group LP, each an investment advisor to funds under management, as holders of the company's preferred stock, and funds and accounts managed by P. Schoenfeld Asset Management LP and Fir Tree, Inc., as holders of the company's common stock, who were prosecuting objections to the company's Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization.
The U.S. Department of Labor, Washington, D.C., USA, this week announced a $1.8 million grant to assist some 450 workers affected by layoffs at Plum Creek Timber Co. Inc. and Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. in western Montana.
A new video by The Institute of Environmental and Human Health at Texas Tech, now available online as a CNN ireport, shows how a wipe called Fibertect makes an excellent sponge to mop up oil released into the Gulf of Mexico by BP's exploded Deepwater Horizon rig.
DuPont Titanium Technologies, Wilmington, Del., USA, this past week announced a price increase for all of its Ti-Pure titanium dioxide grades sold in Europe, Middle East, and Africa regions.
Kimberly-Clark Corp., Dallas, Texas, USA, reports that in 2009 it continued to make progress toward its economic, environmental, and social responsibility commitments according to its seventh annual sustainability report, Choices for a Sustainable Future.
SCA, Stockholm, Sweden, this week announced that Kersti Strandqvist has been appointed Senior VP of the new corporate staff function for Sustainability and will also be a member of SCA's Corporate Senior Management Team.
Darmstadt/Frankfurt – About 243 exhibitors from 17 countries will present their products and services at ZELLCHEMING General Meeting and Expo taking place from June 29 to July 1, 2010 in the Rhein-Main-Halls in Wiesbaden.
TAPPI announces the creation of its Consulting Council, or TCC. Launched at the PaperCon event in Atlanta, this premium service creates a connection between qualified and competent TAPPI members who are subject matter experts with potential clients.
In a converted corn ethanol plant 25 min from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA, four-story tanks of organic fiber waste from International Paper Co.'s Cedar River containerboard mill are being converted into fuel-grade ethanol this week. Maryland-based Fiberight LLC has developed a process to convert IP's organic mill waste, as well as other industrial and household waste streams, into valuable renewable fuel.
IP's Cedar River mill produces 1 million tpy of recycled paper for corrugated packaging, made from old corrugated containers (OCC). About 95% of OCC can be recycled into new paper, but the remaining unusable fiber goes into the mill's waste stream. That adds up to some 50,000 tons of residual fiber waste each year. Previously, this residual fiber was sent to local agricultural companies for fertilizer, animal bedding, and other land applications at a cost to IP.
"When Fiberight approached us in late 2008 with their idea for using our residual fiber to process renewable energy, we saw this as a potential win-win for both companies," said Tom Olstad, operations manager at IP's Cedar River mill. "As one of the largest recycled paper mills in the world, recycling and reusing raw materials is a big part of how we operate. Through Fiberight's new facility, we can now be assured that whatever recycled fiber can't be made into new packaging can be used to create green energy, while helping us offset our disposal costs."
In addition, Fiberight will be introducing organic pulps made from residential trash to the plant later this month. The company has spent the past six years designing processes to separate this organic pulp from everyday waste, creating more recyclables and energy from other parts of the waste stream along the way. "You can't just back up a trash truck to a corn ethanol plant and expect fuel to come out the other end," said Fiberight CEO Craig Stuart-Paul. "We undertook extensive modifications to the plant to incorporate our proprietary digestion and fermentation techniques, as well as processes to help convert organic pulps into cellulosic sugars. I'm very pleased to say that these processes worked extremely well, and hats off to our engineering team, APS Engineering, for making this a reality."
Fiberight plans on spending approximately $25 million to fully convert the Blairstown plant and anticipates producing up to 6 million gallons a year of renewable cellulosic ethanol when the plant reaches capacity sometime in 2011. "Our plans include integrating all the process developments we have learned at our Virginia pilot plant into one facility, and demonstrating the ability to create a series of products that bring a higher value to waste than simply disposing of it," Stuart-Paul explained. "However, without the ability to convert the organic fraction (food scraps, packaging waste, diapers, etc.) into fuels, or 'trashanol' as we like to call it, or even biochemicals that can be used to make bio-plastics, the economics don't work."
The Pira International and TAPPI 2010 Paperboard Packaging Conference in Budapest, Hungary, begins in approximately a month. This 1.5-day event, June 23 -25, features an unrivaled agenda as well as an excellent networking platform. More details on presentations, who will be there, and regular event updates are available on the conference web site.
Boise Inc's International Falls, Minn., USA, mill is celebrating its 100-year history, which is being written in a book titled "The Mill at the Falls–100 Years of Papermaking on the Border" by author Bill Beck. Paper mill employees, retirees, and community citizens will celebrate the anniversary this summer with a picnic and mill tours.
The Rainy River flows from Rainy Lake for more than 70 miles, dividing the U.S. from Canada and Minnesota from Ontario. Prior to the industrialization of the area, the Rainy River had a 28 ft drop at Koochiching Falls. Edward Wellington Backus, a sawmill operator from Minneapolis, saw the potential of a hydro dam for power and the forests surrounding the river yet uncut would serve a mill to make paper. The dam was built in 1905 and the paper mill in 1909, with newsprint first produced on June 6, 1910.
The mill grew to include four paper machines. Kraft paper for bags was a product for some years, and then after World War II, the mill began bleaching pulp. Today the I-Falls mill produces 1,550 tpd of business papers (cutsize copier and printer paper), label and release papers, basesheets, business, and specialty printing grades on its' four paper machines, coater, and five sheeters.
Boise Inc. was formed following the Aldabra 2 Acquisition Corp. purchase of the paper and packaging assets of Boise Cascade L.L.C., in February 2008. Headquartered in Boise, Idaho, tryhe company manufactures packaging products and papers including corrugated containers, containerboard, label and release and flexible packaging papers, imaging papers for the office and home, printing and converting papers, newsprint, and market pulp. It has approximately 4,100 employees and operates five paper mills, five corrugated products plants, a corrugated sheet feeder, a corrugated sheet plant, two distribution facilities, and a transportation business.
Most college students in a new nationwide poll rank themselves as environmentally conscious and two-thirds believe going paperless helps the environment, but they draw the line at electronic copies for key documents, especially when it comes to college diplomas. The nationwide poll found that while college juniors and seniors believe going paperless helps the environment, fewer than 30% would give up printed books, magazines, and newspapers, photos, or official documents. And nearly 70% said the idea of receiving an electronic copy of their diplomas either bothered them or they considered it so terrible that they hated it. Only 4% of the respondents said they would "love" the idea of a paperless college diploma at graduation.
"This is hardly a superfluous scrap of paper," one of the respondents said. "Doggone it, I've worked my butt off in school, and I want a piece of paper on my wall to prove it."
The nationwide survey was conducted by Eric Mower and Associates and commissioned by Domtar, Montreal, Que., Canada. Researchers contacted 420 college juniors and seniors nationwide between April 16 - 20 to ask them their views on what they could do to protect the environment and personal paper usage. The survey has a margin of error of five percentage points. The
"A document like a college diploma should be handed to the graduate in paper," said one student. "It is something that people take great pride in and want to show to people, frame, and hold in their hands."
Lewis Fix, VP of Brand Management and Sustainable Product Development at Domtar, notes that "while it's important to use paper responsibly, there are also myths about paper that should be dispelled. There will always be times when a substitute won't do, because paper is simply more convenient, more effective, and more meaningful. Business gets done on paper, people learn on paper, love is declared on paper, and rights are guaranteed on paper. Even students who identify themselves as environmentally conscious recognize the importance of paper."
The survey also found that:
When it comes to studying at school, 52% of students like materials on paper. Another 23% report they prefer hard copies of most notes and professors also print out class materials.
Another 29% of students said that while they like hard copies, their professors tend to send out electronic copies.
Students clearly prefer paper copies of key documents. Less than a third of the students want electronic copies of their legal contracts (29%), real estate deeds (25%), marriage licenses 23%), birth certificates (17%), passports (15%), or drivers' licenses (12%.
College juniors and seniors identified the top four ways they personally display environmental consciousness include turning off power when electronic devices aren't being used (81%), recycling (75%), using less water (54%), and doing only full loads of laundry or hanging clothes to dry (53%). Some 36% say they are "going paperless" to display their environmental consciousness, ranking it fifth in the survey.
Less than 30% would give up printed books, magazines, and newspapers, photos, or official documents. However, more than 60% of students would be comfortable going paperless with bank statements, class schedules/grade reports, and bills.
"The survey shows that college students are certainly concerned about the planet's future, and want to take steps to reduce their impact—we find that very encouraging," Fix said. "It's also interesting that even with all of the electronic options available to today's youth that paper is still important—whether in the classroom as the medium for their education—or on the wall as a symbol of years of hard work and dedication," he added.
"Something could always go wrong with electronics," one student said of their reason for wanting a printed diploma. "Diplomas are important mementos."
"Getting a diploma over an email makes it seem so much less official," commented another student in the survey. "You worked for it like mad, and gave the school thousands of dollars, the least they could do for you is give you that piece of paper."
As part of the survey, students were asked how they typically send personal notes at an important moment to someone they really care about. About 31% said they write it on paper, because it's more meaningful and the recipient would appreciate it more. A note on paper beat out a phone call (27%), text (22%), and email (20%). When it comes to landing a job after graduation, 47% of students say they will send out resumes electronically, while 27% report they will send out both electronic and paper resumes, and 17% say they prefer to send their resumes on paper.
"It was interesting to see the weight students place on using paper for documents that are important to them—everything from their college diploma to textbooks to personal notes to key people in their lives," Fix said. "For some reason when it comes to their resume, a critical first step in building a career, the largest share of students plan to use email to reach potential employers. Based on how they react to a document on paper, they may want to rethink relying solely on electronic copies of their resumes. Students should not feel guilty about using our paper, because paper is a plant based product that is renewable, sustainable, and recycled with ease," Fix added.
Total U.S. printing and writing paper shipments increased 10% in April compared with April 2009—the sixth consecutive year-over-year (YOY) increase and the third double-digit YOY increase, according to AF&PA's (Washington, D.C., USA), April 2010 Printing-Writing Paper Report. Three of the four major printing and writing paper grades posted double-digit increases compared with last April, while the fourth was down less than 1% percent. U.S. purchases (shipments + imports – exports) of printing-writing papers also increased in April, up 7% YOY April.
Total printing and writing paper inventory levels decreased slightly from March 2010, down 3%. Some additional key findings of the report include:
Uncoated free sheet (UFS) shipments eased slightly YOY, down less than 1%
Coated free sheet (CFS) shipments increased double-digits for the fifth consecutive month
YOY shipments of coated mechanical (CM) also increased in double-digits for the fifth consecutive month
Uncoated mechanical (UM) shipments increased for the fifth consecutive month.
Wood fiber prices for the global pulp industry rose 11%, reaching pre-financial crisis levels in the 1Q/2010, reports the Wood Resource Quarterly (WRQ), Seattle, Wash., USA. WRQ explains that the strong pulp market has pushed wood fiber costs upward in most regions around the world the past 12 months.
The Softwood Wood Fiber Price Index (SFPI), which is based on wood costs in 16 regions in the world, increased for the fourth consecutive quarter, reaching $99.55/odmt in the 1Q/10, WRQ notes. The Index was up 1.2% from the previous quarter and 11.9% higher than the same quarter last year. Softwood fiber price adjustments in individual markets were mixed, with the highest increases occurring in the U.S. South, Western Canada, France, and Russia, while prices fell the most in Finland, Spain, Chile, and Brazil. The strong pulp markets and difficult logging conditions pushed softwood roundwood prices in the U.S. South up to a two year high. Wood chip prices reached their highest price since WRQ started tracking global wood costs in 1988. Wood chip prices in Western Canada have also gone up steadily the past 12 months and were 12% higher in the 1Q/10 than the same quarter in 2009. Even though prices have increased, pulp mills in the two regions currently have among the lowest softwood fiber costs in the world.
Global hardwood fiber markets were also mixed, with higher prices this quarter in the U.S. South, Russia, and Indonesia, while prices were down the most from the previous quarter in Sweden, Finland, Spain, and Brazil. As a result, the Hardwood Wood Fiber Price Index (HFPI) was slightly lower this quarter, to $105.90/odmt. Despite the small recent decline, the HFPI was 15% higher in the 1Q this year compared with the same quarter last year. Russia, Chile, and Indonesia continue to have the lowest hardwood fiber costs in the world, with prices being less than half of what the high-cost regions of Europe have. More information is available online
AbitibiBowater Inc., Montreal, Que., Canada, this week announced that the company and certain of its U.S. and Canadian subsidiaries currently under creditor protection have filed with the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware amendments to its plans of reorganization as well as related disclosure documents. These amendments will also be filed with the Quebec Superior Court in Canada. The unsecured creditors committee supports these plans, the company notes, adding that, with these developments, it is aiming to emerge from creditor protection in the fall of 2010.
The filings provide greater specificity regarding recoveries by unsecured creditors, while maintaining the classifications for all company creditors as proposed in the May 4, 2010, draft framework for the plans of reorganization. The plans of reorganization specify that non-disputed pre-petition secured, administrative, and priority claims would be paid in full in cash, or satisfied as otherwise agreed, at emergence. The plans of reorganization also provide that the company's current common stock will be cancelled and holders will receive no recoveries, while unsecured claims would receive a pro rata share of equity in the reorganized company upon emergence, subject to certain conditions. A convenience class for unsecured claims has also been established.
Since the combination of Abitibi-Consolidated Inc. and Bowater Inc. in 2007 and throughout AbitibiBowater's creditor protection proceedings, the company says it has undertaken sustained and significant actions to restructure and improve long-term profitability. Strategic actions to enhance the company's value include: significant closures of non-profitable capacity; the monetization of non-core assets; and various austerity measures and spending cuts, including a significant reduction in the company's workforce.
AbitibiBowater adds that it has streamlined its asset portfolio to focus on top-performing facilities by closing or idling 3.4 million metric tons of paper capacity, moving from an overall production capacity of 10.4 million metric tons to 7 million metric tons, since 2007. During this period, the company has also sold aggregate assets and land for total proceeds of more than $940 million. Chief among these transactions was the sale of the company's 60% ownership interest in Manicouagan Power Co. (MPCo) for C$615 million. The MPCo transaction allowed for the repayment of one of the company's initial debtor-in-possession (DIP) financing arrangements and the partial repayment of other secured debt.
AbitibiBowater explains that it plans to emerge with a strengthened financial position by building upon the meaningful headway it has made throughout its restructuring. The company has developed a business plan, in consultation with its creditors, stakeholders, and financial advisors, which forecasts improved earning margins and cash flow. These improvements will be made possible in part by company efforts to focus its manufacturing at highly competitive operations.
The reorganized company plans to manage a more adaptive and flexible operating portfolio designed to better capture value through market cycles and capitalize on export market opportunities. There is also potential upside, in promising growth markets, from company innovations in new inkjet product offerings. Other prospects include current efforts to further diversify the company's product mix by converting capacity towards other market segments. As of May 17, the company has ceased newsprint production at its Coosa Pines, Ala. USA, paper mill and entered the packaging papers market with linerboard and corrugated medium as well as natural kraft and bag grades. Another example of a capacity conversion is the recent shift of 100,000 metric tons of newsprint capacity at the company's Calhoun, Tenn., USA, mill to specialty grades.
Before emerging from creditor protection, the company must obtain adequate exit financing and complete efforts to address labor costs and pension issues, as well as satisfy other conditions set forth in the plans of reorganization. In this regard, AbitibiBowater says it has commenced a process to obtain an exit financing package that will provide sufficient capital for the emerged company to manage business operations and execute its plans. Ultimately, the company's plans of reorganization will require creditor approval and confirmation by the courts. Affected unsecured creditors who are entitled to vote will receive the court-approved disclosure and voting materials, which are expected to be mailed in July subject to court approvals.
Domtar's Dryden, Ont., Canada, mill will receive C$22.7 million in federal funding under the pulp and paper green transformation program (PPGTP) for two capital improvement projects that will increase the mill's operational efficiencies and its production of green, clean electricity. The capital investments will increase the mill's annual production of electricity by more than 128,000 MW hours, nearly balancing its production and consumption of electricity. This will result in the offset of tons of greenhouse gas emissions annually.
Domtar, one of 24 pulp and paper companies across Canada that qualified for PPGTP credits, will use the funding at Dryden to:
Install a second steam condenser to operate its wood waste boilers at a higher capacity and its turbine more efficiently. This measure is expected to produce an additional 43,000 MWh of electricity per year.
Install a second high-pressure turbogenerator to increase the production of renewable electricity through use of high pressure and high temperature steam generated by the recovery boiler. This measure is expected to produce an additional 85,400 MWh of electricity per year.
These upgrades will eliminate the need for Domtar to purchase more than 11 MWh of power, and will nearly balance the mill's production and consumption of electricity, enhancing its environmental and commercial sustainability.
The Dryden mill has been in operation since 1911 and was acquired by Domtar in 2007. It produces bleached softwood kraft pulp and handles chipped fiber through to finished pulp production and packaging.
The pulp and paper green transformation program provides companies with credits based on their use of black liquor ($0.16/liter) between January 1, 2009, and December 31, 2009. Firms then have until March 31, 2012, to draw on these credits to finance approved capital projects that offer demonstrable environmental benefits, such as improvements to their energy efficiency or their capacity to produce alternative energy. The program is capped at $1 billion and total payments to the Canadian industry will not exceed this amount. Thirty-eight pulp and paper mills across Canada, representing 24 companies, generated credits under the pulp and paper green transformation program based on their 2009 production levels of black liquor.
Fraser Papers Inc., Toronto, Ont., Canada, reported this week that its subsidiary Fraser N.H. LLC, has reached an agreement to sell substantially all of its assets to an investment fund managed by MerchantBanc LLC, of Manchester, N.H., USA. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. The paper mill in Gorham, N.H. currently operates three paper machines and produced 80,000 tons of uncoated freesheet papers and 37,000 tons of towel products in 2009. The transaction is expected to close in late July and is subject to approval of the Ontario Superior Court of Justice (Commercial List) and the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware.
Fraser Papers remains under creditor protection pursuant to the provisions of the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) of Canada, with its stay of proceedings having been extended by the court to July 9, 2010.
Georgia-Pacific, Atlanta, GA., USA, reported this week that it has completed the purchase of Grant Forest Products' oriented strand board (OSB) facilities at Allendale and Clarendon, S.C., as well as the facility at Englehart, Ont., Canada, and the associated facility at Earlton, Ont. The acquisition, first announced in January, totaled approximately $400 million.
"This acquisition represents a long-term, strategic investment by Georgia-Pacific, which will add value to our customers and our existing operations in Canada and the United States," said Mark Luetters, president - Georgia-Pacific Wood Products. "Georgia-Pacific is committed to working closely with employees, customers, and suppliers as well as local government and business to ensure that the transition is as smooth and seamless as possible. We look forward to hitting the ground running and maximizing the potential of these facilities."
The process for the acquisition has involved a series of governmental approvals on both sides of the U.S. and Canadian border. These have included the Canadian court overseeing the Grant Forest Products Companies' Creditors Agreement Act filing, the Canadian Competition Bureau, the U.S. Federal Trade Commission, Investment Canada, and the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.
Georgia-Pacific currently has seven facilities operating in South Carolina as well as a wood and fiber supply office at Prosperity. In the state, the company manufactures Dixie products, corrugated packaging, thermosetting resins, and building products.
Holmen Paper, Sweden, is reportedly upgrading PM 11 at its Hallsta paper mill to meet more stringent requirements for smoothness and gloss. The machine was taken down for six days at the beginning of this month. Specifics of the upgrade are not available.
The Hallsta mill's three paper machines produce MF magazine paper and a range of special qualities of wood-containing printing paper. The mill's production capacity is about 700,000 metric tpy.
The board of management of the Holmen Group, Sweden, has given the go-ahead for a EUR 238 million investment for a new recovery boiler at its Iggesund Mill in Sweden, which will considerably strengthen its flagship product Invercote. In addition to the recovery boiler, the investment package also includes a new turbine plus equipment for capturing and incinerating weak, sulfur-containing gases, which will further reduce the mill's airborne emissions.
"This investment is important both strategically and structurally. It will give us greater energy efficiency, enable us to be self-sufficient in electricity, and give us a production process that is completely free from any fossil fuel use," mill manager Staffan Jonsson said.
For Iggesund Mill, the new investment is a key step towards realizing its long-term development plan. Fundamental to this plan is to have a production process that uses renewable raw materials and a product, in Iggesund's case Invercote paperboard, that can be recycled both as a material and as energy. The plan also states that emissions to air and water should be global leaders in terms of purity, and that the mill should be self-sufficient in electricity and operate 100% on biofuel.
"We're very close to our goal now," Jonsson says. "With a new recovery boiler and the other new measures, we're also improving our overall environmental performance and further reducing our impact on the local environment. With the new recovery boiler, we are leaping forward in terms of technology, and the result will definitely be clear improvements to our work environment."
The investment in a new recovery boiler will not lead to any increase in paperboard production, but the mill's pulp production capacity will gradually increase from today's 355,000 metric tpy to 420,000 metric tpy. Building the recovery boiler is estimated to take two years. The work will employ about 100 people for the first six months and then between 700 and 1,000 construction workers and specialists for another 18 months.
NewPage Corp., Miamisburg, Ohio, USA, has announced a new On Paper podcast series episode featuring Maria Rodale, chairman and CEO of Rodale Inc., a leading multimedia company with a focus on health, wellness, and the environment. As the author of four books, including the recently released Organic Manifesto: How Organic Farming Can Heal Our Planet, Feed the World, and Keep Us Safe, Rodale has won numerous awards for her leadership in ensuring a healthy environment for future generations.
In this On Paper episode, Rodale shares her extensive research and family business's documented history as an organic pioneer, to illustrate why chemical-free farm systems are important to healthy environments and strong economies. Discussing recent trends in organic including small company startups, younger female farmers entering the field, and big businesses developing organic product lines, Rodale notes that organic is ready for the big time, adding "It's where the action is."
While organic may be where the action is today, for Rodale Inc., understanding the relationship between the health of earth's soil and people's health is a part of the company's rich history. Almost 30 years ago, Rodale's father started a side-by-side comparison of organic versus chemical agriculture, entitled the Farming Systems Trial, the results of which garnered attention from scientists around the globe. With On Paper, Rodale shares, "Organic farming is more productive, more profitable, more fuel efficient. And the surprise finding (from the Farming Systems Trial) was that organically farmed soil actually sequesters huge amounts of carbon, which means that it actually is one of the primary solutions to global warming."
Rodale Inc.'s commitment to studying and responsibly cultivating earth's resources continues today in two new programs that NewPage is a partner in, titled "Tree as a Crop" and "eco4 the planet." The "Tree as a Crop" partnership is designed to educate farmers and small forest landowners about the environmental, social, and economic rewards of properly growing and harvesting trees as a crop. "eco4 the planet" is a demonstration project on a working farm designed to implement "Tree as a Crop" by teaching communities to plant organically grown trees, to promote new sources of local economic and environmental sustainability.
Norske Skog, Norway, reports that its Bio Bio pulp mill in Conception, Chile, has fully restarted following a complete shutdown in the wake of the February earthquake there. The company says that the Bio Bio mill has now returned to normal operations, and that the force majeure announcement of March 3 is therefore revoked.
Sipat S.A. (Societé Industrielle Des Papiers "Tissues") reports the startup of two rebuilt tissue machines (PM. 1 and PM. 2) at its mill in Meknes, Morocco. The rebuild projects were conducted by Toscotec, Italy.
The Sipat mill has a tissue production capacity of 16,000 tpy, some 70% which is absorbed by the domestic Moroccan market, with the remainder being exported to Senegal and Tunisia. The company produces facial tissues, toilet tissue, table napkins, and kitchen towels.
The PM 1 rebuild affected the dry end area of the production line with the installation of a new hood and a new steam and condensate system, increasing the machine drying capacity and thus the production of higher basis weight grades. The PM 2 rebuild goal was to increase both the paper quality and the production speed with the following upgrades: approach flow and headbox modification, a new steel dryer TT SYD 2500MM with new steam and condensate system, steam hood rebuild, and upgrade of the vacuum system.
The rebuilds were completed on time and both were handled by Toscotec on a turn key basis. With the rebuilds, Sipat can now optimize the production cycle, both in terms of production flexibility and in energy costs, while improving paper quality.
SKF, Gothenburg, Sweden, a global supplier of bearings, seals, mechatronics, services, and lubrication systems as well as maintenance services, engineering consultancy, and training, this past week signed a framework agreement with the State Forestry Administration in China to plant new forests in remote areas of the country. The project is expected to run for five years.
SKF has selected the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences (SLU), one of the leading research institutes in forestry, as a technical partner. The signing was held in connection with the kick-off of the "Sweden China Innovation Week" in Beijing that is organized to mark the 60-year anniversary of diplomatic relations between Sweden and China.
China is planning to achieve forest coverage of more than 26% by 2050. By investing in these forests, SKF aims to bring environmental as well as social contribution to the local communities. "We recognize the critical role forests serve in the ecosystem and this project supports our sustainability work and our BeyondZero approach. We are committed to reduce the negative environmental impacts from our operations and offer new technologies, products, and services with enhanced environmental added value to our customers," says Tom Johnstone, SKF president and CEO.
SKF has a robust process aimed to constantly improve the energy use efficiency both in the energy demand for manufacturing operations as well as its facilities. For SKF this has resulted in a reduction in carbon emissions of more than 150,000 metric tons, nearly 27% absolute reduction over the past four years.
Twin Rivers Paper Co., South Portland, Maine, USA, this past week officially opened its Edmundston, N.B., Canada, pulp mill and cogeneration facility that it acquired earlier this month from Fraser Papers. In addition to the Edmundston mill, Twin Rivers' acquisition of the specialty papers core business from bankrupt Fraser included the Madawaska, Maine, paper mill and sawmills in Plaster Rock and Juniper, N.B.
During opening ceremonies at Edmundston, Jeffrey C. Dutton, president and CEO of Twin Rivers, noted that "the launch of Twin Rivers represents a new beginning. With a focus on specialty papers, a more competitive cost structure, and continued emphasis on service and innovation, we are well-positioned to achieve long-term profitability. Because of the hard work and sacrifice on the part of our employees, the commitment and vision of our leadership team, and assistance from our communities and the New Brunswick and federal governments, we are operating today."
In outlining the company strategy, Dutton said he expects Twin Rivers will generate approximately $400 million in revenue and manufacture up to 380,000 tons of specialty paper. By focusing on specialty paper, the company will sell a portfolio of sustainable and differentiated products coupled with a market-leading service platform. As Twin Rivers, the company has lowered its exposure to oil and purchased fiber, upgraded its core facilities, and completed significant cost reduction initiatives."
Keith Ashfield, minister of National Revenue, minister of the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, and minister for the Atlantic Gateway, said that "at the federal level, with C$23 million in credits transferred from Fraser Papers to Twin Rivers, our Pulp and Paper Green Transformation Program is meant to support environmental and energy improvement projects. We are pleased that our support is laying the groundwork for a greener and more secure future for Twin Rivers and the pulp and paper industry as a whole."
Shawn Graham, premier of New Brunswick, added that "our government believes in this company, its employees, and the important role they will play in growing our economy and creating opportunities to keep our kids here at home. Both the Edmundston and Plaster Rock mills have been modernized thanks to funding from our government, and with this restructuring, Twin Rivers now has the secure foundation it needs to be a successful player in this very important industry."
VoIPcare Technology, Cedar Rapids, Iowa, USA, this past week announced the start of a six-month trial period with members of the pulp and paper industry to evaluate the benefits and ROI associated with the use of VoIPcare's qMetrix for Transportation software product. The VoIPcare system provides detailed information necessary to help the industry reduce the amount of in-transit damage being experienced today.
The trial program was initiated through the efforts of the Shipping, Receiving and Warehousing (SRW) Committee of TAPPI, following a year-long study. Conducted by a cross functional team of people representing the linked parts of the supply chain, the study identified a set of criteria that needed to be met to effect long-term reduction of in-transit damage claims. Because of their design philosophy and background in data collection and information delivery, VoIPcare was chosen by the SRW team to design and implement the system.
There are 26 locations participating in the trial process including paper mills, commercial printers, tier 1 railroads, and high volume publishers. "We are very excited about the great response from all participants in the supply chain" said Robin Mangold, principal at VoIPcare. "The industry as a whole has come together to address a common problem and has selected the qMetrix product to help them gather complete information about paper shipments that will lead to better root cause analysis and problem resolution."
The VoIPcare system combines a unique blend of technologies to facilitate the rapid collection and distribution of information. Built on the same technology platform as the VoIPcare qMetrix for Healthcare product, the Transportation product gathers data about the condition of equipment, methods used to protect loads, arrival condition of product, and details about any damage that occurred in-transit. Information that at times took days and weeks to gather is now available immediately at each step in the supply chain. Participants in the supply chain transaction have access to the inspection data and photographs taken in support of those inspections. Damage prevention coordinators from all involved entities can access the same information while reviewing causes and extent of damage reports.
The initial trial period will involve tracking of paper shipments on railcars. As the trial progresses, the VoIPcare team will be planning expansion of the system to include shipments via truck and intermodal containers. In addition to expansion of transport types, the team will also be expanding the use of the system to include other types of products. For more information, contact Robin Mangold, 319-393-3230, firstname.lastname@example.org.
A new report titled The Future of Active and Intelligent Packaging in Food and Drinks: Enabling Technologies, Optimized Consumption, and Multi-sensory Features has been published by Reportlinker.com, New York, N.Y., USA. According to the report, awareness and interest in active and intelligent packaging is growing. Government funded projects that aim to introduce, evaluate, or initiate developments in active and intelligent packaging have been implemented. However, in the survey of food and drinks industry executives carried out for this report, 57.3% of respondents were "not at all aware" or "slightly aware" of active and intelligent packaging.
These results indicate that awareness and understanding of active and intelligent packaging innovations and their resulting benefits will need to increase to facilitate more extensive uptake of these technologies.
The focus of active and intelligent packaging, the report continues, has moved from specific retailer and manufacturer driven benefits like shelf-life extension and spoilage protection, to include more consumer focused benefits such as freshness, quality, and information. A range of diverse technologies and sectors are now relevant for active and intelligent packaging in food and drinks.
In the survey carried out for this report, 85.3% of executives stated that active and intelligent packaging will have "some" or "a large" impact on innovation within the food and drinks sector over the next five years. Freshness and quality indicators, temperature and time indicators, flavor and aroma releasing technologies, natural antimicrobials, self-heating and cooling technologies, were identified as the most important innovations for consumers over the next five years.
Some 9% of all new food and drinks products launched over the period 2006 to 2009 were tagged with "fresh," "freshness," or related terms. Another 3.2% of new products launched were tagged with the term "quality." Food safety and traceability, food wastage, and environmental concerns are influencing the uptake of active and intelligent packaging technologies in the food and drinks sector, the survey disclosed. More information about this new report is available online.
Caraustar Industries Inc., Atlanta, Ga., USA, reports that its Kernersville, N.C., plant has been awarded Eastman Chemical Co.'s Supplier Excellence Award. To qualify for this award, a supplier must meet certain criteria including on-time delivery performance, conformance to specifications, and continual improvement with value-added projects.
"The Kernersville team supplied Eastman with yarn tubes in 2009 that met the criteria for the award, enabling us to successfully serve our customers' needs, "said Jim Nanney, superintendent of Acetate Yarn at Eastman. Only about 1.5% of the suppliers for Eastman in Kingsport, Tenn., were selected to receive an award for 2009. Caraustar serves the four principal recycled boxboard product end-use markets: tubes and cores, folding cartons, gypsum facing paper, and specialty paperboard products.
Smurfit-Stone Container Corp., Chicago, Ill., USA, announced this week that it has reached a resolution with Mariner Investment Group LLC and Senator Investment Group LP, each an investment advisor to funds under management, as holders of the company's preferred stock, and funds and accounts managed by P. Schoenfeld Asset Management LP and Fir Tree, Inc., as holders of the company's common stock, who were prosecuting objections to the company's Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization.
In general, this resolution provides that certain of the new common stock of the reorganized company that the plan previously provided for distribution to the general unsecured creditors of the company will now be distributed to the company's current stockholders. Specifically, 2.25% of the New SSCC Common Stock Pool will be distributed pro rata to the company's existing preferred stockholders and 2.25% of the New SSCC Common Stock Pool will be distributed pro rata to the company's existing common stockholders. Additionally, the resolution provides for the payment of certain of the fees and expenses of the holders and their professionals. The resolution has the support of the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors.
"Reaching this agreement with our stockholders is a major milestone for our company and positions us to emerge from bankruptcy in the coming weeks," said Patrick J. Moore, chairman and CEO of Smurfit-Stone. "Our focus has been, and continues to be, driving value for our stakeholders and helping our customers grow their businesses." The company will ask the U.S. Bankruptcy Court to approve notice procedures with respect to this resolution and to schedule a hearing to approve the resolution and related non-material modifications to the company's Chapter 11 Plan of Reorganization. This resolution resolves all of the objections to the confirmation of the Chapter 11 plan raised by the holders and as a result, the company anticipates an exit from Chapter 11 by early Summer.
Smurfit-Stone's U.S. and Canadian subsidiaries filed voluntary petitions for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the U.S. Bankruptcy Code and under the Companies' Creditors Arrangement Act (CCAA) in Canada on January 26, 2009.
The U.S. Department of Labor, Washington, D.C., USA, this week announced a $1.8 million grant to assist some 450 workers affected by layoffs at Plum Creek Timber Co. Inc. and Smurfit-Stone Container Corp. in western Montana. Awarded to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry, this grant will be operated by the Statewide Workforce Programs and Oversight Bureau. It will provide dislocated workers from Plum Creek and Smurfit-Stone who are also certified as eligible for Trade Adjustment Assistance with access to "wrap-around" and supportive services. These services include dependent care and transportation assistance, which will help them pursue training opportunities and are not available through the TAA program. Any workers not eligible for TAA will have access to the full array of training and employment-related services under this grant
Plum Creek laid off workers between January 8 and June 25, 2009. Smurfit-Stone laid off workers following the facility's closure on December 31, 2009.
"Montana's timber and wood products industry saw a marked downturn during the recent recession," said Secretary of Labor Hilda L. Solis. "Today's grant will help these workers enter training that will allow them to compete for and find jobs in new and emerging industries." National Emergency Grants are part of the secretary of labor's discretionary fund and are awarded based on a state's ability to meet specific guidelines.
A new video by The Institute of Environmental and Human Health at Texas Tech, now available online as a CNN ireport, shows how a wipe called Fibertect makes an excellent sponge to mop up oil released into the Gulf of Mexico by BP's exploded Deepwater Horizon rig. If made into booms, it would not only absorb 40 times its weight in oil, but also detoxify much of it. The U.S. military uses the Fibertect wipe, made of nonwoven cotton with an activated carbon core, in its decontamination kits to remove chemical and biological warfare agents.
part of its recently launched Mohawk Loop paper line, Mohawk Fine Papers, Cohoes, N.Y., USA, has introduced Mohawk Loop Silk coated paper. The new, FSC certified paper, made with 50% postconsumer waste fiber, has a matte gloss finish and its 92-bright white shade matches the white uncoated shades within the grade, making it possible to mix and match coated paper with distinctive uncoated finishes. The coated sheet is suitable for a variety of printing techniques from metallics and varnishes, to other specialty processes such as engraving and embossing. As with all Mohawk Loop papers, it is available in "right size" press sheet sizes for optimized imposition and maximum efficiency on press.
"Mohawk Loop Silk gives printers and designers the ability to combine tactility within any project, while maintaining color matches and an environmental standard throughout the project. And, because it's available with i-Tone, Mohawk Loop Silk is a cross-platform paper, making it easier to choose the right paper for any application, all within one grade line—Mohawk Loop," said Dave Van de Water, director of product and market development. Mohawk Loop is manufactured with Green-e certified windpower, made carbon neutral through the purchase of Verified Emission Reduction credits (VERs), and is packaged in Mohawk's new environmental packaging material.
ABB, Dundalk, Ireland, has introduced a new High-Performance Infrared (HPIR) moisture sensor for its QCS800xA Quality Control System (QCS). Intended as a replacement for the HemiPlus moisture sensor, the HPIR is designed to improve the performance and reliability of both new and existing ABB QCS systems.
HPIR provides tighter CD control and faster startups and grade changes. Papermakers can shift moisture targets closer to acceptable quality limits, saving energy and reducing fiber costs while remaining within the paper grade's quality specifications. The increased precision comes from several technical breakthroughs in the design that significantly increase the signal-to-noise ratio and the measurement rate of the sensor. As a result, the sensor can resolve moisture streaks as narrow as 4 mm. With a measurement rate of 5,000 per second, it provides precision measurements, even as paper machines continue to become wider and faster, ABB says.
HPIR does not require liquid cooling and it is the only moisture sensor on the market with no continuously-moving parts. The modular design allows for easy field replacement of modules, avoiding factory repairs and eliminating the need to stock a complete spare sensor. More information is available online.
Botnia, Finland, announced this week that it will increase pulp prices in Europe, beginning June 1 until further notice. The new prices are: Northern Bleached Softwood Kraft (NBSK) $980 per metric ton and Bleached Birch Sulfate $920 per metric ton—all CIF Botnia's usual ports.
DuPont Titanium Technologies, Wilmington, Del., USA, this past week announced a price increase for all of its Ti-Pure titanium dioxide grades sold in Europe, Middle East, and Africa regions. Effective July 1, or as permitted by contract, net prices in the Euro markets of Western and Central Europe and North Africa regions will increase by EUR 150 per metric ton. This is in addition to the previously announced June 1 increase. Effective July 1, or as permitted by contract, net prices in the U.S. dollar markets of Eastern Europe, Middle East, and Sub-Saharan Africa regions will increase by $150 per metric ton. This is in addition to the previously announced June 1 increase.
DuPont Titanium Technologies operates plants at DeLisle, Miss.; New Johnsonville, Tenn.; Edge Moor, Del.; Altamira, Mexico; and Kuan Yin, Taiwan, all which use the chloride manufacturing process. The company also operates a mine in Starke, Fla. Technical service centers are located in Paulinia, Brazil; Mexico City, Mexico; Mechelen, Belgium; Dzerzhinskiy, Russia; Kuan Yin, Taiwan; Ulsan, Korea; Shanghai, China; and Wilmington, Del., to serve the Latin American, European, Middle Eastern, Asian and North American markets.
For the first time, as part of Walmart's 5th Annual Sustainable Packaging Expo in Bentonville, Ark., USA, in April, a packaging scorecard audit was held. A total of 47 products were purchased at Walmart Store No.1 in Rogers, Ark., and evaluated. The evaluation team was built from Walmart's Packaging Sustainable Value Network (SVN) Leadership Team and members of the Packaging Scorecard Support Team (PSST).
While this audit was conducted thoroughly, results were reported as being qualitative in nature due to the limited sample size. The Audit Team found that for a little more than half of the products audited, there was less than +/- 20% variance in all components when comparing measured data with scorecard data. The team noted that several products did not have completed scorecards, and that data entered in some scorecards were incorrect. The team also made recommendations for additional training focusing on details of calculations and guidance for measurement accuracy.
Did your company exhibit at Walmart's 5th Annual Sustainable Packaging Expo in Bentonville, Ark., USA? If so and you have some feedback, Walmart is interested in hearing your opinions. Please send your comments to Colleen Walker at email@example.com or 770-209-7349 and she will forward on to the Walmart SVN Leadership team. Dates for the 2011 Expo will be announced soon.
Kimberly-Clark Corp., Dallas, Texas, USA, reports that in 2009 it continued to make progress toward its economic, environmental, and social responsibility commitments according to its seventh annual sustainability report, Choices for a Sustainable Future. The report was recently issued and highlights the company's numerous achievements, such as improving energy efficiency by 3.7% since 2005, reducing water usage by 13 million cubic meters, contributing $22.7 million to charitable causes worldwide, and forming new relationships with environmental groups such as Greenpeace.
"Our progress in 2009 reflects the hard work of our employees worldwide in helping to integrate sustainable business practices into everything we do," said Suhas Apte, VP of global sustainability at K-C. "While we are proud of our efforts, we realize that sustainability is an area in which our work will never be done. Our latest report shares our accomplishments of the past year and sets the stage for our future initiatives that are in the works for 2010."
As part of the sourcing standards it developed with Greenpeace in August 2009, K-C sought to use 40% of either recycled fiber or FSC-certified fiber in all of its North American tissue products by the end of 2011. Due to unusually favorable fiber sourcing conditions and additional FSC-certified fiber that became available in 2009, the company surpassed this goal two years ahead of schedule with a total combined usage of 43.6%.
K-C's commitment to sustainability has enabled it to lead the personal products category in the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for five consecutive years. The company has ranked in the top 1% of the more than 4,000 companies analyzed by GovernanceMetrics International for its corporate governance standards and has received sustained recognition from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In particular, the EPA has honored K-C with the Energy Star Partner of the Year award for the second consecutive year, SmartWay Transportation Excellence award for the third consecutive year, and it ranked first on the agency's On-Site port.
SCA, Stockholm, Sweden, this week announced that Kersti Strandqvist has been appointed Senior VP of the new corporate staff function for Sustainability and will also be a member of SCA's Corporate Senior Management Team. Strandqvist was employed at SCA in 1997 and has since worked in various positions in the hygiene area, which accounts for 60% of the Group's sales. She is currently VP of the Feminine Care product area within the Group's unit for category control, the Global Hygiene Category. She will assume her new position as SVP on August 1 and will report directly to the CEO.
"Environmental and sustainability are highly important strategic issues and an integrated part of our operations. Kersti's experience and expertise will enable us to further advance our position in the CSR field and thus strengthen the commercial benefits related to sustainability," says Jan Johansson, CEO and President of SCA.
Registration is now open for the TAPPI Introduction to Linerboard/Medium
Manufacture Course, August 3-5, 2010
in Kennesaw, Georgia USA. This course is designed to increase participants' understanding of linerboard and medium manufacturing. It will be taught by Dr. Michael J. Kocurek, Professor, Paper Science & Engineering at North Carolina State University, one of the world's most recognized educators in the pulp and paper industry; and Chuck Klass, one of the industry's most recognized consultants.
New to the industry? Attend the optional half-day tutorial on papermaking being offered prior to the start of the course. Additional registration and fees required.
The Optional Introduction to Pulp and Paper Seminar will take place from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday, August 2, 2010. View the seminar overview information on the Course's web page.
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For the first time, this annual meeting will be held outside of North America. Join industry experts, scientists, health and safety specialists, legal and government policy makers, and leading researchers from multiple disciplines to discover how nanotechnology can shape the next generation of value-added forest products.
Keynote presentations will be made by Andriy Kovalenko, Senior Research Officer, Group Leader – Theory and Modeling, NRC-NINT and Adjunct Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Alberta; and Hadi Mahabadi, Vice President and Center Manager, Xerox Research Centre of Canada (XRCC).
Abstracts for 2010 NETInc. (Innovative Nonwovens Conference) are due May 31, 2010.
Organized by the Nonwovens Engineers and Technologists (NET) Division of TAPPI in collaboration with the Nonwovens Institute at North Carolina State University, NETInc. is scheduled for November 10-12, 2010 in Raleigh, NC USA. NETInc. is the perfect forum for a new constituency of industry and academic researchers, the professionals from the nonwovens and affiliated industries and the academic community to enable connections and synergies that support capability development and innovation for industry growth.
Organizers are looking for papers covering the following topics: Health & Well-Being, Safety & Security, Sustainability & the Environment, Energy & Infrastructure, and Emerging Technologies/Market Trends. View the Call for Papers. Back To Top
Darmstadt/Frankfurt – About 243 exhibitors from 17 countries will present their products and services at ZELLCHEMING General Meeting and Expo taking place from June 29 to July 1, 2010 in the Rhein-Main-Halls in Wiesbaden. A comprehensive lectures and supporting program underline the status as Europe's most important annual event of the pulp and paper industry.
The lectures of the 105th ZELLCHEMING General Meeting comprise the following topics:
Competitive edge by energy savings
Environment, energy efficiency and efficient use of resources in paper making and paper converting
Energy Efficient Paper Making
Nano-Fibers and Nano-Cellulose
Biorefinery of Paper Making Residues
as well as a series of exhibitors' presentations for technique and management.
Join the TAPPI Consulting Council, or TCC, a premium service that connects qualified and competent TAPPI members who are subject matter experts with potential clients.
For consultants, TCC becomes a 24-hour business development rep. It also drives traffic to the consultant's site. No site? No problem. It provides segment specific marketing of the consultant's company and service capability on the TAPPI website. More importantly, it allows the consultant to take advantage of low cost advertising that reaches decision makers needing expertise just like theirs. In short, it's an excellent, cost-effective extension of the consultant's current marketing efforts.
Best of all, it allows consultants to negotiate fees and scope with the potential client who ultimately pays them directly. No middleman.
It delivers value that would cost them over $64,000 a year for just a fraction of that cost. Want more details? Contact Kristi Ledbetter at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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