Georgia-Pacific has a long history of being a sustainable company, making products that improve people's lives and doing so in a responsible manner that balances social, environmental and economic interests.
We are committed to managing forests today so that there will be abundant, healthy, diverse forests in the future. These efforts help ensure the future of North America's robust resources, as well as secure our ongoing ability to make our customers' lives better and contribute to prosperity in society.
Forestry certification was developed to provide guidelines and structure in order to determine what is “good” sustainable forestry, and then to verify it. Georgia-Pacific supports all of the recognized forest certification organizations, including the Sustainable Forestry Initiative®, the Forest Stewardship Council®, the Canadian Standards Association, American Tree Farm System® and the Programme for Endorsement of Forest Certification.
We view competition among these programs as vital to continually improving the practice of sustainable forestry on all lands, but not all programs are applicable or relevant for all landowners and every region of the world.
Georgia-Pacific was the first forest products company to achieve third-party certification for its wood and fiber procurement operations through the Sustainable Forest Initiative in 1999. With more than 10 million forest landowners in the United States, the SFI Certified Sourcing program provides a vital platform for impacting sustainable forestry practices on all lands, certified or not.
Chain of Custody certification is an accountability process that tracks wood fiber through all stages of production. Georgia-Pacific has met the chain of custody standards of the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® and the Forest Stewardship Council® at our communication papers facilities in Camas, WA, Crossett, AR, and Port Hudson, LA.
In all of Georgia-Pacific’s North American virgin fiber supply basins, an independent party has conducted controlled wood risk assessments. The analysis confirmed that all basins are at low risk for impacting high conservation value forests, conversion to plantations or non-forest use, illegal harvest, violation of traditional and civil rights, and use of genetically modified trees.
As a forest products company that doesn’t own any forests, Georgia-Pacific takes an active role in organizations that support sustainable forestry at the national and state levels, including Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) Implementation Committees (SICs).
We also share our forest management and stewardship knowledge with the landowners from whom we buy wood, and we require all loggers and suppliers to be trained in sustainable forestry practices.
In fact, through the SICs, more than $55 million has been contributed in support of logger training and landowner outreach since 1995. More than 130,000 logging professionals have participated in SFI-approved logger training programs.
Some lands, because of their unique or rare qualities, simply need to be protected. Georgia-Pacific has practiced and promoted sustainable forestry for many years. Our Statement on Forest Protection and Sustainable Practices gives us the opportunity to address issues like forest biodiversity and protection for our customers, consumers and society at large.
One of Georgia-Pacific’s environmental commitments is to define and map endangered forests and other special areas within our key wood fiber supply regions, which will then be off limits to fiber sourcing for Georgia-Pacific.
We have been working with environmental organizations to understand the qualities they believe are important in identifying endangered forests. We have also been working with an expert in ecology and geographic information system mapping to develop a scientific methodology that considers the qualities associated with endangered forests and special areas.
This is the first time a forest products company has used a broad-scale analysis to identify and map endangered forests and special areas across eco-regions in the United States.
Georgia-Pacific is a major user of recycled fiber in our office paper, as well as many other products, like tissue, towels, containerboard, corrugated boxes and gypsum wallboard face paper. In addition, GP Harmon Recycling, a Georgia-Pacific company, is one of the largest brokers of recovered paper, buying and selling millions of tons annually.
We are committed to continuing our efforts to increase the use of post-consumer content in our products – to the extent it meets consumer needs – to a goal of 50 percent post-consumer recycled fiber within our total recycled fiber supply system. We also will maintain our participation in the forest products industry effort to increase the recovery rate of paper consumed in the United States.
Georgia-Pacific received the 2012 “Leaders in Sustainability” Energy Efficiency Award by American Forest & Paper Association. The award, given for our comprehensive energy management program to reduce energy intensity in our manufacturing operations, is one of the association’s Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 Sustainability Awards, which recognize exemplary sustainability programs and initiatives.
Visit our Corporate Resource Center to download PDFs of more in-depth information about Georgia-Pacific and Sustainable Forestry.