The paper industry has been deliberating over the issue of calculation and reporting of carbon footprints for paper products for some time. Customers are increasingly asking for carbon footprint figures for our products, and it is essential that such numbers are calculated on a consistent basis. Our industry is sustainable: carbon is sequestered in managed forests and in forest products; recycling paper reduces landfill emissions and our paper recycling performance is key to helping Government meet its recycling targets. It is important that these facts are recognised when reporting carbon footprint figures for our industry.
CPI has, through its European trade association CEPI, published a comprehensive set of framework documents to allow paper companies to calculate the carbon footprint of their products on a consistent basis. CPI has also been working with Defra, BSI and the Carbon Trust over the development of a UK carbon footprinting measurement specification known as BSI PAS 2050. This “publicly available specification” was published by BSI on 29 October 2008.
CPI and PaperChain have produced a fact sheet which discusses the difficulties which can occur when calculating the carbon savings associated with the recycling and disposal of waste paper and board.