Water Stewardship

We recognize that healthy, sustainable watersheds are essential to communities, the environment and manufacturing our products, and that we have an important role to play. That’s why we’re focused on both water use and water quality in our operations, as well as engaging locally with other water users and stakeholders. We are evolving our strategy towards context-based water stewardship.

We have continuously improved our overall water footprint over the past decade as part of our Vision 2020 goals. As we look forward, we are evolving our strategy towards context-based water stewardship. This contextual approach informs our Vision 2030 targets on water stewardship: to reduce our operational water use by 25% per ton of production, and to implement local water stewardship plans at each of our mills.

Learn more about Vision 2030 and see how we are partnering with others to support watershed health.

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Water Stewardship
  

Vision 2020 Goal

Achieved: Performed annual facility risk assessments and launch of first partnership in a priority basin; 62% of mills engaging local stakeholders on water

Stated Goal*: Integrate water management into regular facility assessment and proactively engage with stakeholders in communities to address water-related issues within the watershed

*Restated in 2016

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Water Quality

Vision 2020 Goal

Achieved: 35% decrease in oxygen-depleting substances

Stated Goal: Reduce mill water discharges of oxygen-depleting substances to receiving streams by 15%

All of our sites across our global enterprise are held to the same high standards in achieving optimal wastewater treatment system performance, as part of our management system. Periodic regulatory and systems audits ensure sites are in compliance with permits, regulatory rules and company-specific standards. Beyond our manufacturing operations, we recognize that about three-quarters of all available freshwater in the world originates in forests, so by promoting responsible forestry practices we are also supporting healthy watersheds.

Water Influent Sources*

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Water Infographic
More than 90% of water used in our mill manufacturing is returned to the environment
As we work to build a better future beyond 2020, we are committed to improving the long-term sustainability of shared water resources where we live and work. We believe that stewardship means striving to leave everything in better shape for future generations — and we are extending this approach to water, both within our operations and beyond. It’s important that we understand the characteristics of each watershed in which we operate, and that we address the most important local water issues for our company and for local
communities, other water users and the environment.
 
Learn more about our water stewardship strategy in our Global Citizenship Report.
 
*All water use data includes pulp and paper mills