Environmental Paper Network Launches Extensive Update to its Paper Calculator

By Joshua Martin

Popular environmental impact estimator aims to drive innovation in paper use and purchasing

Asheville, NC – An improved web-based Paper Calculator, launched today by the Environmental Paper Network-North America, will provide tens of thousands of annual users with new information and features to help them measure the impacts of their paper and reduce that impact through better choices.

Paper Calculator version 4 is the most comprehensive update of this tool to be released. It delivers more expansive environmental impact categories including additional pollutants and new biodiversity and ecosystem impacts, for a total of 24 indicators in all. It provides more accurate climate change reporting and has been updated with the latest paper industry and life cycle assessment data from trusted sources. Additionally, the new calculator covers an expanded range of paper grades, and now includes the growing sector of tissue products.

This new version is powered by a next-generation life cycle assessment that continues the tool’s legacy of innovation in the field. These updates reflect a multi-year effort by experts from leading environmental groups, such as CanopyNatural Resources Defense CouncilNational Wildlife FederationSierra Club and Conservatree, as well as representatives from academia and business, including the University of Southern California and Kimberly-Clark Corporation. The process was facilitated by SCS Global Services, a leading third-party certifier and standards developer.

“These important LCA updates will not only help users make even more informed choices about paper products than ever before, but also set a new benchmark of transparency for other product sectors,” said Keith Killpack, SCS’ Manager of LCA Services. “We congratulate the Environmental Paper Network for its continued leadership in support of responsible sourcing.”

The Paper Calculator’s user experience has also been enhanced. Like the earlier version, version 4 is easy to operate and can be used to generate custom reports. Version 4 also provides users with new resources, such as detailed descriptions and common product examples of the paper grades included, a feature to calculate the weight of a user’s copy paper using the number of reams or sheets, and improved transparency via a new resource document that details the calculator’s methods.

Global paper consumption is steadily increasing, and North Americans consume more paper than anyone else in the world. Packaging and tissue products are driving growth, and while replacing single-use plastics with paper is currently trendy, it creates more pressure on forest ecosystems. Reducing our impact on the planet is critical, and awareness and measurement are key pieces of the puzzle.

Read the full article here.

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Pac-12 and Unifi Announce Founding Partnership of Pac-12 Team Green

Pac-12 Press Release

Unifi to serve as official sponsor of all Pac-12 Championship events, provide grant funding to Pac 12-member institutions to increase recycling efforts and work with Pac-12 Networks to further promote Pac-12 campus sustainability and recycling programs

BOULDER, Colo. – The Pac-12 and Unifi, Inc. and today announced a long-term partnership, with Unifi serving as the Founding Sustainability Partner of Pac-12 Team Green and as a sponsor of the Pac-12 Sustainability Conference. As part of the partnership, Unifi will provide grant funding to all 12 of the Conference’s member institutions to support sustainability initiatives and increase recycling efforts; work with the Pac-12 and Pac-12 Networks on creating custom content and media assets to feature sustainability programs and support efforts to recycle billions of plastic bottles into fiber; and will serve as an official sponsor for all Pac-12 championship events. The announcement today occurred during the 2018 Pac-12 Sustainability Conference at the University of Colorado Boulder.

Pac-12 Team Green is a first-of-its-kind collegiate athletics conference sustainability platform set to promote all greening efforts taking place on and around Pac-12 campuses.  The launch of Pac-12 Team Green further cements the Pac-12’s commitment to an elevated approach to enhancing sustainability efforts within collegiate athletics departments, designing new collective initiatives and sharing best practices to transform college sports into a platform for environmental progress.  Key components of the platform include the Pac-12 Sustainability Conference, the Pac-12 Zero Waste Competition and the Pac-12 Sustainability Working Group which unites leaders from all 12 of the Conference’s member campuses from both athletics and sustainability.  This integrated platform was instrumental in Unifi’s decision to partner with Pac-12 Team Green, further cementing the company’s efforts to promote recycling, sustainability, and its focus on the circular economy.

“At Unifi, sustainability is a core component of the work we do and who we are,” said Richard Gerstein, executive vice president of premium value-added brands and global chief marketing and innovation officer at Unifi. “While we have recycled more than 12 Billion plastic bottles into REPREVE Polyester products including athletic shoes and apparel, we recognize the need to create a paradigm shift in recycling rates in the US to keep even more bottles out of landfills. Working alongside the Pac-12, our goal is to expand this undertaking to our Universities, who are taking a leading role in educating and changing behaviors.  We’re excited to partner with the Pac-12 and join the impactful work they’re doing to broaden sustainable living.”

Read the full release here.

Three Ways to Score Savings with Your Waste Program

By Guest Author, Energy Manager Today

Credit: Tiffany Daniels/Mortensen Construction, Courtesy of SMG and US Bank Stadium

Credit: Tiffany Daniels/Mortensen Construction, Courtesy of SMG and US Bank Stadium

We’re glued to the NBA finals. Baseball season is in full swing. But, I want to bring us back to an unprecedented win from football season. Amongst the hype, one story continues to impact us long after the final whistle between the Philadelphia Eagles and the New England Patriots: a collaboration to achieve a zero waste game at US Bank Stadium. Rush2Recycle aimed to recover more than 90% of the waste generated during the game and to send the remaining 10% to a waste-to-energy incineration plant.

The project leveraged:

• Three-bin collection systems for trash, recycling and composting
• Compostable service-ware, including cups, trays, straws and utensils
• Ambassadors to guide fans on disposal
• Hand-sorting the waste stream behind-the-scenes to recover what the public missed

When US Bank Stadium, Pepsi Co, Aramark, and the NFL announced the final score, Rush2Recycle had successfully recovered 91% of all gameday garbage. Nearly 63 tons (enough to fill 4,500 bathtubs) of the 69 tons were recycled or donated for reuse (62%) and composted (29%). This high-profile project demonstrated what we can achieve with creativity, cooperation, and a little innovation. If a stadium full of almost 70,000 intensely focused fans of mixed allegiance, hailing from all 50 states can strive for zero waste, so can your business.

And, what better time to start than now?

Whether you’re motivated by committing to sustainability, complying with increasing state and local legislation, or streamlining pickups and saving money, here’s what you need to know in 2018 to score waste savings for your company:

Read the full article here.

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