Environmental issues are becoming a deciding factor in the business environment and all indications are that, in the near future, compliance with legislation and voluntary standards will be crucial to the survival and potential of a large number of companies, not only in the paper industry, but in other sectors as well.
Fifteeen years have passed since the adoption of the first Paper Industry Environmental Policy by 9th General Assembly of SPPaC in April 1993. Much of what the original Policy set forth has been fulfilled by the paper industry in general, some policy items have become obsolete with time, and new factors have arisen that demand our immediate attention. Therefore, the 19th General Assembly adopted the new, revised Environmental Policy as set forth below. The new policy will form the basis for the Association's environmental activities and the starting point for individual companies to develop their own environmental policies. The policy is as follows:
- We will systematically increase the utilization of wood matter, which is the fundamental, most important, and renewable source of raw materials for the paper industry.
- We will increase the proportion of recycled paper in our products and support joint efforts to increase paper recycling up to the optimum level given by the fibre life cycle.
- We will systematically restrict the paper industry's damaging influences on the environment, both through our own technologies and through ancillary processes; furthermore, we will systematically decrease the energy demands of our processes.
- We will gradually exclude environment-damaging raw materials from our manufacturing programmes, including those materials that hinder paper product recycling.
- Through gradual improvements in technologies and processes, we will endeavor to limit the generation of waste directly at the source.
- We will provide regular information to the public concerning environmental issues, activities, and solutions, especially in communities where our manufacturing units operate.
- We will work towards greater awareness of environmental matters on the part of our workers, colleagues, and the general public. We will also support environmental activities at the local community level.
- In our member organizations, we will support the application of European environmental management standards (EMS, EMAS, ISO 14000 series standards) and develop the concept of eco-effectiveness and IPPC performance.
- On a regular basis, we will evaluate the effects of environmental legislation and, in cooperation with the Confederation of Industry and Transport of the Czech Republic, we will initiate legislative steps that will bring improved care for the environment at a manageable cost.
- As a full member of CEPI, we will participate in CEPI's environment, recycling, and forestry committees and take an active hand in executing the procedures and achieving the principal goals set forth in the IPPC policy papers (integrated prevention and control of pollution) and BAT (best available technologies).
- In our efforts to improve the environment, we will use new tools such as voluntary self-regulatory agreements and flexible financial instruments.
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