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2021 Sustainability Award Winners

Georgia-Pacific

Leadership in Sustainability – Energy Efficiency/Greenhouse Gas Reduction

Quilted Northern Ultra Soft & Strong: Designed with Environment in Mind

Georgia-Pacific's Quilted Northern brand saves 30 percent more water and uses 30 percent less energy by using efficient manufacturing technology to squeeze more water from tissue paper before drying – a sustainable product designed with the environment in mind.

WestRock

LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY – SAFETY 

Hazard Hunter Program

WestRock’s Hazard Hunter Program engages teammates to identify and address hazards that could result in safety incidents. New and improved safety procedures are documented in traditional standard operating procedures but then, also filmed for a video library to support multi-dimensional learning. The innovative team approach has resulted in identification of hundreds of potential hazards and advances WestRock’s goal toward a 100% safe workplace.

Green Bay Packaging

LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY: SUSTAINABLE FOREST MANAGEMENT

Sustainable Forestry – Growing Success Together

Green Bay Packaging partnered with the Sustainable Forest Initiative® (SFI), American Forest Foundation and the American Tree Farm System to advance and pioneer the SFI Small Lands Group Module Certification, as the ‘first in the paper industry’. Since starting the program in 2020, Green Bay has qualified 100+ landowners representing more than 40,000 acres and this success continues to grow! This partnership adds value for family landowners to increase certified sustainable forests in the U.S., while at the same time reduces barriers, such as the cost of certification.

Essity

LEADERSHIP IN SUSTAINABILITY – WATER

Water Use Reductions & Effluent Quality Improvements

Through great initiative, creative thinking and teamwork—and without major capital investments—Essity’s Midwest team improved effluent water quality and increased water conservation. Notably, at its Menasha, Wisconsin paper mill, Essity decreased direct discharges of Phosphorus by 55 percent and Total Suspended Solids by 35 percent, and reduced its freshwater use by 20 percent. And at its nearby converting facility in Neenah, the team reduced municipal water use by 20 percent.

New-Indy Ontario

INNOVATION IN SUSTAINABILITY – PAPER RECOVERY FOR RECYCLING 

Stock Preparation Efficiency Project

New-Indy improved repulping systems at its Ontario, California mill by adding additional screening and de-trashing capacity. The additional equipment delivered higher fiber recovery yield and provided the ability to consume mixed paper in all products without sacrificing quality. In addition to raw material cost savings, New-Indy's waste stream was also reduced. The improved fiber recovery efficiency resulted in 5,500 tons less waste leaving the mill. Additionally, 10,000 tons of mixed paper with no outlet were processed by the mill and diverted from the landfill.

WestRock

INNOVATION IN SUSTAINABILITY – PAPER RECOVERY FOR RECYCLING

Scan. Learn. Recycle. Pizza Box Recycling Program

WestRock teamed up with Domino’s Pizza and other industry partners to clear up misconceptions about pizza box recycling. The project took a three-prong approach: Study the impact on grease and cheese on recycling, assess consumer access to pizza box recycling, and launch a public educational portal to spread the word that pizza boxes are recyclable. Since an estimated 3 billion pizzas are consumed in the U.S. each year, that’s about 600,000 tons of potential fiber recovery.

Georgia–Pacific

INNOVATION IN SUSTAINABILITY

Innovations Across the Recycling Supply Chain

Georgia-Pacific introduced three innovations in 2020 to address the recyclability of products. Partnering with a major online retailer, Georgia-Pacific developed a paper-based mailer that is 100 percent curbside recyclable. The company also introduced Dixie® ecosmart® 100% Recycled Fiber Hot Cups – America’s first hot cup made from 100 percent post-consumer recycled fiber. Georgia-Pacific is also working to increase paper cup recycling by investing in recycling infrastructure and working with municipalities to increase acceptance of paper cups to curbside recycling programs.

Sonoco

INNOVATION IN SUSTAINABILITY

EnviroSense™ PaperBlister™ Packaging

Sonoco Alloyd introduced EnviroSense PaperBlister packaging, a recyclable alternative to the traditional blister packaging, that works with existing sealing equipment lines. EnviroSense PaperBlister packages are made entirely from renewable resources and curbside recyclable. The all-paper packaging offers a more sustainable option that is highly efficient in the delivery stream, allowing more packages per truckload and reduced shipping costs.