Board Converting News, August 30, 2021

Paper, Climate Change And Common Sense BY KATHI ROWZIE

that could stifle an industry that is, in reality, a part of the solution. Mitigating climate change demands a common-sense approach that is grounded in sound science, embraces proven strategies, and invests in driving continuous im- provement. This approach, in a nutshell, is why the North America paper and paper-based packaging industry is a A look across the life cycle of paper shows that its car- bon footprint can be divided into three basic elements: carbon sequestration, greenhouse gas emissions and avoided emissions. Each of these elements is influenced by important characteristics that distinguish paper from other products: it’s made from a renewable resource that stores carbon, it’s manufactured using mostly renewable, climate mitigation leader. Paper’s Carbon Footprint carbon neutral energy, and it’s easily recyclable. Sustainable Forestry And Carbon Sequestration Sustainable forest management, the cornerstone of the North American paper and paper-based packaging indus- try, helps increase the ability of forests to sequester carbon while also protecting and conserving other forest values like soil, air and water quality, wildlife habitat and biodi- versity. An infinitely renewable resource, healthy forests sequester carbon by capturing CO2 from the atmosphere and transforming it into biomass through photosynthesis. The carbon stored in forests helps to offset releases of

The UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) recently released updated projections about the effects of human activity on our planet, warning that inaction to immediately address climate risk will yield dire consequences. The IPCC’s conclusions and recom- mendations will no doubt be the subject of continuing debate, but there are three things that most people agree on: the climate is warming, humans play a role, and we need to do some- thing about it. However, without broad-based public understanding of how the environment works, there is an unfortunate ten- dency to believe that all manufacturing industries and pro- cesses must be part of the problem, a misconception that some in the ENGO community and the news media are only too happy to exploit. They push the thoroughly unsci- entific narrative that paper contributes massive amounts of carbon dioxide (CO2) to the atmosphere, a byproduct of tree harvesting, manufacturing processes and paper waste. Far from mitigating climate change, it’s a narrative Kathi Rowzie



August 30, 2021

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