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The European paper recycling rate reached an impressive 70.4% in 2011. The ERPC monitoring report shows that the total amount of paper collected and recycled in the paper sector remains stable at 58 million tonnes, the same as in the previous years, but with an increase of 18 million tonnes since 1998, the base year for the first voluntary commitment the paper value chain set itself for increasing recycling in Europe. Since 2000 the recycling rate has increased by 18%-points due in part to the excellent work of the ERPC.
A new reporting format includes more indicators in addition to the volumes and recycling rate. For example, the number of European countries exceeding a 70% recycling rate going up to 13, whereas 12 EU countries still have under 60% recycling rates for paper, indicating further potential for increasing paper recycling in Europe. The number of cycles a paper fibre goes through in the loop reached, on average, 3.4 (compared to the global average of 2.4). µ
In addition to the quantitative progress, a lot of qualitative work has been done to establish an ecodesign towards improved recyclability and in the area of waste prevention. The results include pioneering work to give recycling solid and scientific support, such as the adoption of scorecards to assess the recyclability of paper-based products.
Industry guideline for the Compliance of Paper & Board Materials and Articles for Food Contact: Issue 2 EN/DE/ES/IT/PL/NL
The Industry Guideline for the Compliance of Paper & Board Materials and Articles for Food Contact was first published by CEPI and CITPA two years ago.
It has been well received by organizations and authorities at both European and national level, and has become a reference for the paper and board food packaging value chain. Its uptake has been wide and the greater part of the text is still considered to be current.
The Industry Guideline was however conceived as a moving document, aligned with the whole food contact material sector, which is continuously evolving. Fairly frequent revisions were therefore envisaged and this new version is considered timely.
Stakeholders in the Industry Guideline were surveyed to assess the revision needs and from this survey a list of aspects to be revised was compiled. Key amongst these aspects were:
• the publication of the new CEPI GMP
• the coming into force of Commission Regulation (EU) No 10/2011 for plastics
• the update of the German BfR Recommendation XXXVI, and
• the concerns over the presence of mineral oils hydrocarbons in food
The revision has been made through the work of a Cross Industry Group, thus reflecting and continuing the original cross industry approach.
The Cross Industry Group will continue its monitoring activity of the sector and the collection of inputs to be taken into account for the next revision.
The underlying aim is to make available to all stakeholders a relevant tool for demonstrating compliance of paper and board packaging and for the continuing supply of safe products to consumers
This publication has been translated into German, Italian, Spanish, Polish and Dutch.
Producing pulp and paper in Europe requires the use of a wide range of resources (raw materials, energy, water, chemicals …), of which “people” are the most important.
Inherently, the pulp and paper making process may present risks to the health and safety of the workers. These risks can be related to the use of certain substances/products, to the running of the machines, to the exposure to high temperatures, to the transport and handling of loads of different kinds, to the maintenance of the production equipment, etc. In 2003, the European paper industry committed to an aspirational target of “zero accidents”. Together with the European paper workers’ union EMCEF and under the auspices of the paper sector social dialogue, the project of compiling a set of concrete good practices for safety and health at work has been initiated with the financial support of the European Commission. To develop this report, some 60 concrete practices have been received from EMCEF and CEPI members.
A reference group composed of workers’ and employers’ representatives, with an expertise in the topic, have selected the most exemplary 22 practices. These practices can apply to different types of pulp and/or paper mills, to different kinds of activities (daily operation, transport and handling, maintenance) and can in most cases be adapted and transposed. Considering the complexity of the pulp and paper manufacturing operations, those good practices which have been chosen can by no means be exhaustive, but the report paves the way to further identification of other good practices that can be shared and illustrates the benefits of constructive co-operation towards a common goal. Both EMCEF and CEPI believe in the merits of awareness raising and experience sharing and hope that this report will be one of the reference tools for health and safety managers in the European paper industry. It should contribute to the indispensable effort to reduce health and safety risks at work in the sector on the route to “zero accidents”.
On 20 October 2010, in the context of the European Paper Sector Social Dialogue, EMCEF and CEPI organised a workshop on health & safety practices in the European paper industries. Through presentations reflecting on different situations, mills and regions, the workshop gave the opportunity to identify the many aspects of prevention, protection and resolution of health and safety issues. When the opportunity of carrying out a joint project was identified, that would require a strong commitment of both EMCEF and CEPI and could be financially supported with EU funding, the paper sector partners chose to work together on awareness raising, information exchange and experience sharing on health and safety. The project that resulted in the current report of good practices has been steered by a pilot group composed
of representatives of the standing secretariats of both EMCEF and CEPI. To ensure the robustness and validity of the content, a reference group, composed of health and safety experts nominated by both organisations was set up. Both EMCEF and CEPI inquired about good health and safety practices in the paper sector by using a template questionnaire to ensure a minimum level of consistency in the replies.