Wood & Paper

Environmental Impacts of the Wood & Paper Industry

This high impact intensity framework covers forestry, pulp production, paper, sawmill, wood products, packaging and other fiber products. The wood & paper value chain impacts are mainly driven by the upstream forest management, the share of recycled fibers and the final uses of the products. The best available environmental assessments about sourcing of virgin and recycled wood and fibers are provided by sustainable forest certification schemes.

For instance, the Forest Stewardship Council, FSC, the most globally recognised label, includes certified forests in 82 countries and more than 32 000 companies (e.g. forestry companies, industries and retailers), that guarantee traceability of their products. However, certifications account for only 2.3% of global forest area and only 12% of global wood-producing forests are certified . The following chart shows how certification translates to a NEC score within the framework for forestry management.

The following chart shows how certification translates to a NEC score within the framework for forestry management.

How the NEC measures the impacts of wood and paper

In brief, the methodology used to calculate the environmental impacts of the wood and paper industry is based upstream on certifications for forest management and wood procurement and downstream on final uses, such as building, furniture, biomass, paper and packaging.

Upstream Environmental Factors

The primary environmental stakes are modelled by certification schemes are:
+ Climate (energy consumption)
+ Biodiversity (deforestation)
+ Water (consumption in quantity relative to regional scarcity, and pollution altering water quality).

Performance Indicators

The specific indicator values depend on the position in the wood & paper value chain and related environmental issues:
+ Final use NEC: derived from products’ final uses in relation with the NEC provided by several frameworks and integrating NEC malus for single use or overpackaging and NEC bonus for light weight, fully recycled packaging, e.g. corrugated board
+ Incremental NEC: reflecting production processes and wood sourcing via certifications

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    Designed to inform and empower investment decision makers, it uses physical data from across the whole value chain to provide a snapshot of an activity’s net environmental contribution and it can be applied at a company, portfolio, index or product/source level.

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