Resource efficiency is a key aspect of our sustainability work, both in terms of economizing on the use of the Earth’s resources and also for our cost-efficiency.

Our business model is based on a sustainable and efficient value chain. We establish goals and constantly monitor our use of resources with the help of our Resource Management System (RMS). You can read more about this system and our performance in our Annual and Sustainability Report.

Fresh fiber is the basis for recovered fiber

The foundation for our products is fresh wood fiber, which is sourced from responsibly managed forests. We also use small amounts of recovered fiber for the production of certain paper grades. Fresh fiber and recovered fiber are part of the same system, which requires a refill of fresh fiber to ensure the availability and quality of recovered fiber, which is then used to produce new products. Fiber-based products, regardless of whether fresh fiber or recovered fiber is used, can replace fossil-based alternatives.

Wood is a climate-friendly building material and is becoming increasingly popular to create pleasant and healthy environments. The lower part of the tree becomes solid-wood products and the upper part is used for the production of pulp and paper.

Sustainable energy consumption

Energy efficiency and the choice of energy raw materials are decisive for our climate footprint. We work constantly to increase our energy efficiency and over time, we have made several investments to increase our use of renewable energy and reduce our fossil dependency. Our goal is to reduce our specific energy consumption. Within our ESAVE program, we identify, prioritize and follow up energy-saving measures.

 

Water – an essential resource

Water is an essential resource and is scarce in many parts of the world. We use mainly surface water to supply our plants and treat our wastewater before it is discharged. Our emissions to air and water are regulated by the environmental permits for each plant. We have conducted a survey of the water situation and can see that our plants are located in areas with good access to water. Accordingly, we have not set any general water-reduction goals, but focus instead on reducing our emissions to water. At the current time, we have chosen to focus on reducing suspended solids and phosphorous. During the period 2014 to 2020, we will reduce our emission by 10%.

Industrial ecosystems minimize production waste

We have built up our industrial ecosystems so that our various operations in combination can make use of the entire tree that is felled in the forest in a resource-efficient manner. Most of our residual products and by-products can be used as raw materials in other parts of our operations. One example is chips and sawdust from the sawmills. The chips become pulp, which is further refined into various paper products. The sawdust is used to produce pellets, which in turn are used to generate energy.

The majority, 93%, of SCA's solid waste is recycled. Only a minor share, 1%, is hazardous waste that cannot be recycled without first being treated by an authorized consignee. The remaining waste is sent to landfill.

Logistics solutions for climate benefits and competitiveness

Large amounts of raw material and products are handled in our operations. This must be done efficiently and in an environmentally friendly manner. We work continuously to optimize our logistics system in terms of transport efficiency, measured as transport usage per transported volume of goods, choice of transport mode, technology and fuel. Depending on distance and availability, we use ships, rail and trucks. We collaborate with our partners to develop more efficient systems and to optimize transportation.

In 2017, brand new railway cars were brought into operation for the transportation of timber from the forest to the mills. The cars were developed in collaboration with our partners and generate both environmental gains and enhanced efficiency.