The European Standard EN 643, European list of standard grades of paper and board for recycling, is the basic document to be used by industry professionals in the buying and selling of paper for recycling. Interested parties should order the EN 643 from their respective national standardisation body . The standard was revised in 2013. It defines what the different grades of paper for recycling can and cannot contain as well as defining prohibited materials and unwanted materials. It also sets maximum tolerance levels by grade for unwanted materials.
Specific agreements between buyer and supplier for grades with special specifications might still be necessary to meet individual requirements. However, general recommendations are needed to facilitate a common understanding of the standard.
To achieve greater harmonisation, to improve the implementation of the EN 643 Standard and to facilitate commercial relationships between paper mills and paper for recycling suppliers, these guidelines contain recommendations regarding paper for recycling quality controls for paper for recycling suppliers and paper mills.
The European paper industry was invited to collaborate with the World Economic Forum (the Forum), the Ellen MacArthur Foundation and the McKinsey Center for Business and Environment on Circular Economy to produce a white paper with guidelines on design and management for circularity. The new publication provides essential guidance to all actors in the supply chain through simple ecodesign rules for paper products, without limiting innovation and the introduction of new techniques. This is a product of the three pilots under Project MainStream, launched during the 2014 summit in Davos.
Although highly recyclable, paper is usually converted by industries that add chemicals to it through printing inks and other auxiliary materials. This can lead to problems in subsequent circular chains, as these chemicals cannot easily be removed from the paper before re-entering the mill. Furthermore, the already highly-optimised recycling process cannot follow the speed of the evolution of inks and toners.
The publication summarises the key choices to be made by direct (printers, papermakers, collectors) and indirect (such as local authorities, ink producers, equipment manufacturers) stakeholders. More specifically, it identifies the choices that can influence businesses ordering a fibre-based product - printed paper, packaging or other.
Paper and board production by CEPI member countries fell slightly, by around 0.3% in 2015 according to preliminary figures, after -0.2% in 2014.
Total production in 2015 was around 91 million tonnes.
Mill and machine closures in Europe in 2015 amounted to 2.4 million tonnes whilst new capacities or upgrading of existing ones reached 1.3 million tonnes only.
It is estimated that the production of pulp (integrated + market) has decreased by around 0.5% compared to the previous year, with total output of approximately 36 million tonnes.
It is estimated that output of market pulp decreased by around 2.6%.
It is estimated that utilisation of paper for recycling by CEPI members decreased by around 0.4% compared to 2014 at 44 million tonnes.
As in recent years, the fall of the graphic paper sector demand, was partly offset by the more positive development in the packaging paper and board sector.
Based on the cumulative data up to the end of the third quarter of 2015 it is expected that total paper and board deliveries for the year remained relatively unchanged when compared to 2014,
following the trend in paper and board consumption.
It appears that the overall consumption of paper and board in CEPI countries in 2015 was relatively stable when compared to 2014, based on the latest data available.
The industry has declared the start of The Age of Fibre with a brand new publication containing the most innovative products of the pulp and paper industry. This new publication is the third in the sequence of initiatives that started with the 2050 Roadmap in 2011, followed by the Two Team Project in 2013. All products featured in the new publication were shipped to Brussels for an exhibition that ran throughout the European Paper Week 2015.
CEPI in cooperation with StepChange and SITRA have launched a brochure on the state of industry 4.0 in the pulp and paper industry. The European pulp and paper industry has experienced and consistently supported the three major phases of industrial transformation since the 18th century. From steam power to electric power, then to the progressive integration of automation and information technologies, today’s paper industry stands ready to engage in its fourth industrial phase: industry 4.0.
Central to this next level of transformation is the abundance and utilisation of mass data, the ability to connect across the value chain in real-time, mass customisation and smart factories. More than simply another ‘buzzword’, industry 4.0 represents the next industrial revolution. This will contribute to Europe’s re-industrialisation and industry’s increased competitiveness.
Very soon, industry 4.0 will link product customisation with large production series, linking products to services and machines to machines. This will lead to faster, more flexible and more efficient manufacturing processes and shorter supply chains, so allowing an unprecedented level of ‘mass individualised’ customer service.
Today, the European pulp and paper industry is in full transformation. Both market and consumer needs have evolved, while policy pressure and global competition have increased. Therefore, industry has to innovate to remain competitive. Innovation can address not only processes, services and products, but also business models, workforce training and education. Consequently, our industry sees huge potential in ‘digital’, instead of treating it as a trend we are forced to compete with.
Since 2000, the European paper value chain has been committed to the two-fold aim of increasing recycling and joining efforts to remove obstacles hampering paper recycling in Europe. Consequently, today’s situation is transformed relative to what we experienced 15 years ago.
In 2014, 71.7% of all paper consumed in Europe was recycled, totalling 58 million tonnes. Compared to the previous year, that represents an increase of 0.7%. Paper consumption has increased by the slightly higher figure of 1.2% compared to 2013, reaching 81 million tonnes. Currently, 22% of paper consumption cannot be collected or recycled. We are clearly nearing maximum potential.
This situation is also linked to changing consumption patterns affecting the most recycled paper products. We have seen the continued decline of newspaper consumption in 2014. At the same time, the increased consumption of corrugated boxes has only partly compensated the challenge of declining graphic paper consumption for the overall recycling rate.
In 2014, we have also seen good achievements at the regional level, despite differences continuing to exist. The number of countries with recycling rates below 60% has
decreased, while the number of countries with a recycling rate above 70% has increased, compared to last year.
On an international level, Europe continues to be the world leader in paper recycling, followed by North America. Other world regions’ paper recycling rates have also improved, but starting from lower levels. In Europe, paper fibres have 3.5 loops on average, far above the global average of 2.4.
The paper fibre loop offers the current EU-level discussions on the circular economy a clear and workable model to be followed. Paper recycling is an industry “Made in Europe”. It prolongs value chains and creates green European jobs based on a renewable resource.
Implementation guide Discussion on the BAT conclusions for the pulp and paper sector
The new BAT conclusions for the production of pulp, paper and board was published in all EU languages in the Official Journal of the European Union on 30 September 2014 containing the legally binding requirements for all pulp, paper and board producers located in Europe. With the adoption of the Industrial Emissions Directive (IED) in 2010 for the permitting and control of emissions of installations, BAT conclusions become legally binding for all industrial and energy operators.
The publication of the BAT conclusions for pulp, paper and board production manifests the start of a four year period of intensive work. By 1 October 2018, all European pulp, paper and mills must consider the new BAT conclusions and adhere to them in their permit to operate. The permit conditions, including emission limit values, must be based on the new BAT conclusions. All mills must have revisited their environmental permit, discussed the suggested (non-prescriptive) best available techniques (BAT) and the (prescriptive) BAT conclusions with the permitting authority, and where feasible, have implemented necessary measures in the mill.
Coordinated by the European Commission’s European IPPC Bureau in Seville, the revision of the original best available techniques reference document for pulp and paper manufacturing (BREF-PP, published 2001) started already in 2006. The revised BREF-PP, published in May 2015, is a background document to the new BAT conclusions for the paper sector. It details over 900 pages pulp and paper production processes, lists BATs to consider, associated emission levels, etc. BREFs are only available in English; they have no legal status but are reference for those involved in setting permit conditions for installations.
The Confederation of European Paper Industries (CEPI) has issued an implementation guide with the objective to give mill operators and environmental managers an understanding of principles and views of importance while considering the need to revise the permit. This implementation guide discusses the BAT conclusions for the sector. It also includes a question and answer section. The guide is developed by and for industry with the purpose to help pulp and paper mills during discussions with authorities on the implementation of the new BAT conclusions.
As circumstances and interpretations differ among all EU member states, CEPI’s ambition is to support and guide operators of the sector. Doing this, we take a view that is achievable for operators within the legal framework. In the end, decisions are taken by the national or local competent authorities and, where necessary, reviewed by the judiciary. The guide is not intended for the competent authorities but to help you to refer to official documents published by the EU (in your language) and in national legislation. In order to further support industry mills operators and managers before the implementation deadline, CEPI has set up a helpdesk for frequently asked questions.
This booklet contains the key statistics necessary to give a clear picture of the performance of the European pulp and paper industry in 2014.
The statistics are a compilation of data received from the National Associations which are CEPI members, under the auspices of CEPI’s Statistics Network. Some additional sources, such as Eurostat, have been used where necessary and relevant.
Extra statistical information is accessible online to members on CEPI’s Members Area website at www.cepi.org/members/statistics and to non-members by subscription. For more information please contact Ariane Crèvecoeur at email@example.com.