Happy Earth Day!
Today we’re celebrating the 52nd annual Earth Day by bringing together our two passions: sustainability and paper.
We all want a healthy planet and, most importantly, dependable office paper, but how? The good news— it’s entirely possible to have an office paper that not only meets your needs, but is also environmentally responsible, supports local economies and respects Indigenous cultures.
This blog will help you select an environmentally responsible office paper from a trusted manufacturer who is dedicated to improving sustainability efforts and the efficient use of renewable resources.
Get the Facts on How Paper is Sustainably Made
Historically, the pulp and paper industry has taken most of the blame for global deforestation. Many people still believe that using paper directly contributes to deforestation. The real culprit is development. According to the U.S. Forest Service, about 6,000 acres of open space are lost to development each day – that’s a rate of 4 acres per minute! Furthermore, the agency estimates that 44 million acres of private forest lands could experience sizeable increases in housing density by 2030.
The truth is, much of the fiber North American paper companies use to create paper comes from small landowners that face the same struggles many of us face every day – such as saving for retirement and putting their kids through college. By selling fiber to pulp and paper companies, these landowners can keep their forests as forests and still support their families. To learn more about sustainable forestry, check out this podcast of one of our partners, Donna Janssenour, a North American landowner, in Domtar’s Paper Matters Podcast Episode 5 – How a Forest is Sustainably Managed.
Do you know where your paper comes from? If you’re concerned about your environmental footprint, according to Two Sides, the pulp and paper industry is one of the lowest emitters of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions compared to other major industrial manufacturing industries. Tremendous energy efficiency improvements have been made at pulp and paper mills in the U.S. and Canada. This includes reducing the use of fossil fuels and continuous improvements and monitoring of environmental performance to stay in compliance with changing environmental regulations.
North American paper manufacturers are often also committed to respecting the rights of aboriginal groups by making it a priority to develop and maintain working relationships in forest management and wood-fiber processing where they share common public lands.
Did you know there are also economic benefits to buying North American paper? When you buy paper produced at a North American paper mill, you are supporting communities where the paper mill is often the main source of income. Therefore, it is safe to assume that these communities are especially dedicated to preserving the health of the land where they reside.
Looking Beyond Recycled Paper
Recycling used paper is always the right thing to do, so, of course, you would assume that buying 100% recycled paper is an environmental must. However, the truth is without certified virgin fiber, we would run out of paper within two months. That is because paper can only be recycled five to seven times. Both recycled and certified virgin papers have a place in the sustainable office.
To make an educated decision on what types of paper makes the smallest environmental footprint, be sure to investigate all angles. Recycled content, North American made, the company’s sustainability focus, energy efficiency initiatives to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and valid certifications are all important to be aware of when selecting environmentally responsible, and dependable office paper.
Luckily for you, we have done the research for you. After all, EarthChoice® Office Paper is more than paper. It’s peace of mind!
Sustainably Sourced, Impressive Quality Office Paper
Domtar’s EarthChoice® Office Paper features a vast array of paper options, all of which are sourced from North American forests where endangered species are protected, workers are provided with fair wages and the rights of indigenous people are respected. The entire EarthChoice® line of office papers meet the standards of the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) helping your business achieve your sustainability goals.
All of Domtar’s pulp and paper facilities are certified to the standards of the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®). An FSC standard certification indicates that the forests where the wood fibers are harvested are managed in a way that reduces their environmental impact. So, you can trust that an office paper that has earned the FSC Label® is made from responsibly sourced wood fiber.
Not only does EarthChoice® meet all standards of the FSC®, but the recycled office paper also has a crisp, clean look with no visible fibers.
OK, so it may not look like it’s recycled, but how well does it print using laser printers, inkjet, and copiers?
Well, it performs even better than you would expect from a recycled product! With Domtar’s EarthChoice® Office Paper, you can expect excellent performance on copiers, laser printers and inkjet printers, and bright colors This dependable and environmentally sustainable paper also features a 92 brightness and ColorLok® Technology, providing bolder color, darker blacks and faster drying times.
Domtar is committed to investing in our local communications through financial and product donations, and employee volunteering. In alignment with our sustainability principles, we support our local communities where we live, work and play. We focus our philanthropic efforts on three areas that align with our business: literacy, health and wellness, and sustainability.
From highway clean-ups, charitable giving, grant making, sponsorships, and volunteering our time, Domtar contributes to causes large and small, global and local. We will continue to work within our local communities to promote sustainable practices, improve livelihoods and help build a better future.
In 2010, Domtar launched the EarthChoice® Ambassador program with the intent of providing an employee engagement program through sustainability. After 2 years, a decision was made to expand the Ambassador program to all of our sites globally by 2020. Today, we are happy to report that we have accomplished this goal!
Throughout its 11-year history, the EarthChoice® Ambassador program promotes sustainable practices that focus on our customers, employees, company and communities. These ambassadors help identify and share innovative solutions, educate and encourage sustainable habits, and amplify our sustainability message throughout our organization and beyond.
Do Your Research!
So how can you tell if the sustainability claims of a product are authentic or just another marketing ploy? One simple way is to do your research on the company. If you’re researching paper mills, the sustainability claims should go far beyond the product offering. The sustainability policies and goals should be easy to find and clearly communicated, providing full transparency..
Domtar’s new Sustainability Priorities is now available to download. Most sustainability reports will share statistics and stories about progress achieved from efforts to use water more efficiently, reduce emissions, invest in employees and communities, and make boardrooms more diverse. The highest quality reports will go a step further and share the challenges faced in making further progress.
On the hunt for a reliable office paper that’s dependable while also being sustainably responsible? The options in the EarthChoice® Office Paper line was created to offer a variety of options for environmentally conscious consumers who consider sustainability to be a top priority. Not sure where to start? Check out our blog, How to Choose the Right Office Paper for Your Project, Priority and Budget.
For more information on Domtar’s new Sustainability Priorities, visit our website at www.domtar.com.