Thursday, July 30, 2009

Xerox Won't Talk so Greenpeace Shines a Light

Today, the XEROX building in downtown Montreal was declared a forest crime scene by a team of Greenpeace’s volunteers who were drawing attention to the impact of XEROX's paper on intact areas of Canada’s Boreal Forest.

Greenpeace has asked XEROX repeatedly in the past year to take steps to reduce the corporation’s impact on the Boreal Forest. Yet the company still refuses to examine its supply chain, eliminate its controversial sourcing of paper and meet with Greenpeace, according forest campaigners with the organization. Seems like a good time for Xerox to take a hard look

Xerox: it seems like a good time to take a hard look at

More information on today's events and the campaign here.

Provocative campaign video below....

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

MeadWestvaco Boosts Shareholder Q2 Profits with Help From US Taxpayers

MeadWestvaco announced its second quarter report to shareholders this week, and shareholders received a boost from US taxpayers thanks to the black liquor tax credit loophole, which pays 50 cents/gallon for burning qualifying, "alternative fuels." The IRS has been allowing paper companies to claim the tax credit under a 2007 loophole added to a 2005 highway transportation bill by former Alaska Senator Ted Stevens to bring US taxpayer aide to the fish processing industry.

Rueters says....

Excluding a $112 million benefit for the use of alternative fuels and restructuring charges of $25 million, profit was 22 cents per share, topping the analysts' average expectation of 1 cent, according to Reuters Estimates.
Conservation groups disagree with the structure of this industry aid for its exclusion of recycled and groundwood mills, putting those generally more environmentally preferable at a market disadvantage. Only chemical, or "kraft," mills in the US qualify for the money. The groups also contend that when the tax credit expires later this year, jobs will still be lost because we have not invested in necessary recycling and energy efficiency infrastructure to compete in a low carbon economy. The current policy, made by loophole, results in overproduction, suppressed prices, trade disputes, and temporarily rising stock value. As an alternative, conservation groups support federal investment to create green jobs in recycled fiber collection and re-manufacturing in North America and energy efficient technology upgrades to existing mills.

In other company news, MeadWestvaco Consumer and Office Supplies recently earned Forest Stewardship Council "Chain of Custody" certification. A good first step, and hopefully the first of many steps through to improving management in the forest and the footprint of their entire operations. The Paper Planet will follow and report on how this "Chain of Custody" certification does or does not lead to changes in product lines and in the forest, and look forward to more good progress to come from MeadWestvaco.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Greenpeace Canada Activists Arrested

16 Greenpeace Canada activists were arrested yesterday for blockading the offices of the Quebec Ministry of Natural Resources and delivering Quebec lumber logged and sold by AbitibiBowater, as an act of protest against a new forestry law, bill 57. Forest campaigners say the bill, "will mean the further degration of [Quebec's] forests and the eventual disappearance of woodland caribou."

Read more and see more photos here....

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

FSC Hits 100 Million Acre Mark in North America

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) reports that the area of U.S. and Canadian forests managed to its stringent environmental and social standards surpassed the 100 million-acre mark in June, representing 40% growth since January 2008 and helping solidify FSC’s position as the fastest-growing forest certification system in the world (UN FAO, 2007).

“The core driver of this growth is a shared commitment among landowners, manufacturers, retailers and consumers to conserve forest ecosystems and safeguard the rights of native peoples and local communities,” says Corey Brinkema, President of FSC-US. “And while this is a major achievement, it remains but one shared step in doing the right thing for forests, people and wildlife.”

read the full press release....