Greening And Environment

ICFPA releases global Sustainability Progress Report

The International Council of Forest and Paper Associations (ICFPA) has released its biennial Sustainability Progress Report, which highlights the forest products sector’s global response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Who is ICFPA?

ICFPA serves as a forum of global dialogue, coordination and cooperation. The ICFPA currently represents 18 pulp, paper, wood, and fibre-based associations that encompass 28 countries. This includes many of the top pulp, paper and wood producers around the world. The 2021 ICFPA Sustainability Progress Report shows progress on nearly all of the sector’s performance indicators using the most recent data available (2018-2019). This report demonstrates progress in seven key areas of sustainability; sustainable forest management, renewable energy, greenhouse gas and sulphur dioxide emissions, water use, health and safety, and recycling.

ICFPA president and CEO of Forest Products Association of Canada, Derek Nighbor, said, “In the face of the biggest health and economic crisis of our lifetimes, we are reminded that the global forestry sector has the potential to address some of our most urgent social, environmental, and economic challenges. Forestry workers and forest products are in the unique position to drive our move to a lower-carbon world through sustainable forest management, advancing the forest bioeconomy, and recovering more paper and paper-based packaging for recycling.”

Key performance indicators

  • In 2019, 52.6% of procured wood fibre came from third-party certified sustainably-managed forests: a 41 percentage point increase from the 2000 baseline year.
  • Greenhouse gas emission intensity decreased 21% from the 2004/2005 baseline year.
  • The energy share of biomass and other renewable fuels increased to 64.9%, a 12 percentage point increase since 2004/2005.
  • Sulphur dioxide emission intensity from on-site combustion sources decreased 77% from the 2004/2005 baseline year and 38% from the previous report.
  • Water use intensity decreased 12.5% from the baseline year.
  • Investment in health and safety interventions yielded a 30% reduction in the global recordable incident rate from the 2006/2007 baseline with the number of recordable incidents falling to 2.88 per 100 employees annually.
  • In 2019, 59.1% of paper and paperboard consumed globally was used by mills to make new products, marking a 12.6 percentage point increase in the global recycling rate since the year 2000.

Executive director of the Paper Manufacturers Association of South Africa and member of the ICFPA Steering Committee, Jane Molony, said, “As a sector, both globally and locally, we continue to make a positive impact and meaningful progress in areas of sustainability, society and the economy, providing citizens with a renewable resource in the form of sustainably produced wood, cellulose and paper products. Wood in its various forms not only meets essential daily needs, it also provides a raw material for conventional and innovative alternatives for sustainable packaging.”

Download the ICFPA 2020-2021 Sustainability Progress Report.

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