Environmental responsibility

Recognising that we live in a world where natural resources are under increasing pressure, we aim to lighten our environmental footprint through a far-reaching environmental management approach which includes:

  • Minimising the environmental impact of our operations in terms of raw materials and energy use.
  • Developing new production methods and products and finding innovative new ways of beneficiating waste.
  • Saving water and energy at every stage in production processes. This begins in our South African plantations, where we apply best practice management. techniques to produce woodfibre with properties that allow it to be pulped using less energy and water.
  • Ongoing investment in research and development.
  • Monitoring environmental performance and legal compliance at each mill, by constantly assessing our performance in terms of energy dashboards, integrated water and waste management plans, air emissions, and effluent.
  • Taking appropriate, pre-emptive action to avoid or mitigate identified environmental risks.
  • Ensuring that we keep up with environmental best practice through an internal environmental ‘cluster’ comprised of experts in various fields   
  • Having environmental targets in place in each region. Progress to achieving targets is reported to the management teams in each region on a regular basis, quarterly to the Global Sustainable Development Council and to the Social, Ethics, Transformation and Sustainability Committee biannually.
  • Using internationally recognised, independently verified certification systems including the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®), the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification™ (PEFC™) and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) (woodfibre); as well as ISO 9001, ISO 14001, OHSAS 18001 and, in Europe: EMAS (Eco Management and Audit System) and ISO 50001 in Europe and South Africa.

We are advantaged by the fact that our primary raw material is woodfibre, a renewable, recyclable natural resource. The sustainably managed forests and plantations from which we source woodfibre are essential to a healthy environment, sustaining vital plants and wildlife, filtering our water and air, and reducing greenhouse gases by removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere.

Trees and forests play an essential role in mitigating the impact of climate change. Planting trees is one of the most important things we can do to contribute to the health of the planet. Forests are the lungs of our planet, drawing in carbon dioxide and breathing out oxygen. And trees improve our lives both on a grand scale and at the local level.
António Guterres, United Nations Secretary General, message on the International Day of Forests 2018
We hold ourselves accountable to global sustainability best practice standards by transparently measuring, monitoring and communicating our economic, social and environmental performance.
Our ability to deliver value creation for our shareholders by focusing on improved profitability, strategic positioning and debt reduction lies at the heart of our commitment to sustainability.
Active corporate citizenship programmes relevant to the needs of the communities where we operate ensure that we promote socio-economic development within these communities.