BOSTON (News release) - Sappi North America, Inc., a leading producer and supplier of diversified paper, packaging products and pulp, released its 2021 Sustainability Report, which incudes the highest possible rating from EcoVadis, the world's most trusted provider of business sustainability ratings.
Sappi Limited, including Sappi North America, has once again earned a Platinum rating in the annual EcoVadis Corporate Social (CSR) ratings. This achievement places Sappi North America individually and Sappi Limited collectively in the top 1% of all companies reviewed. EcoVadis evaluated Sappi's commitment to sustainable practices using 21 criteria, including environment, labor and human rights, ethics and sustainable procurement.
The 2021 Sustainability Report displays Sappi's dedication to innovation, sustainability and business growth throughout its communities and staff. The report also highlights how Sappi remained innovative and prosperous amid supply chain disruptions; its steadfast resolve to advancing women in leadership roles, along with strategic partnerships to forge a path for women in STEM; and its commitment to employee safety and third-party collaborations for sustainability initiatives.
To help achieve its ambitions 2025 sustainable developments goals, Sappi continued to integrate the principles of the United Nation's Sustainable Development Goals as a key part of its business and sustainable practices.
"Our business strategy, operational efficiencies and critical improvement plans in 2021 drove our strong market performance, while at the same time meeting or exceeding our targets for environmental stewardship," said Mike Haws, President and CEO, Sappi North America. "These achievements are an encouraging start on our journey toward aligning our 2025 strategic goals with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, an important global benchmark for sustainability."
Highlights from the report include:
Increased women in senior management roles. Sappi set a new goal in 2021 to enhance diversity in its workforce, also aligning with the UN's SDGs. The company exceeded its goal and appointed 21% of women in senior management positions. Sappi continues to prioritize the promotion of talented individuals with diverse experiences and backgrounds.
Reductions in waste and energy emissions. Sappi exceeded its year-end goal to reduce solid waste in landfills, which brings the company closer to their five-year target of a 10% reduction. Further, the company also reduced CO2 emissions with the use of 80.7% renewable and clean energy.
Improved safety rate and investments in safety leadership training. In 2021, improvement in safety increased and four out of five Sappi manufacturing sites experienced their best-ever lost time injury frequency rate (LTIFR) performance. Additionally, the company invested in safety leadership training across mills with the intent of extending the training to other sites in fiscal 2022.
Partnerships in STEM and forestry. In an effort to advance STEM careers for women, Sappi partnered with Girl Scouts of Maine and the Women in Industry division of the Technical Association of Pulp and Paper Industry (TAPPI). The virtual program teaches girls the science and technology of the pulp and paper industry, including papermaking and recycling. Continuing in 2022, the program is slated to reach even more Girl Scouts across the country. Additionally, Sappi joined forces with Maine Timber Research and Environmental Education Foundation (Maine TREE Foundation) to host a four-day tour to educate Maine teachers about sustainable forestry and the logging industry.
Best-in-class environmental practices. As an endorsement of sound environmental practices, the Cloquet Mill achieved an impressive overall score of 84% on the Sustainable Apparel Coalition's (SAC's) Higg Facility Environmental Module verification audit. The mill is the first to undergo and complete an external environmental management verification process.
Building confidence in sustainable textiles. Through a collaborative partnership with Sappi Verve Partners and Birla Cellulose, forest-to-garment traceability solutions became available for brand owners. Focused on responsible sourcing, traceability and transparency, the partnership ushered in confidence for consumers and brands to ensure their products originate from renewable sources of wood.
"Let me make this real for a moment: our improvement in energy efficiency from the 2019 baseline is enough to electrify over 80,000 homes for a year," said Beth Cormier, Vice President of Research, Development and Sustainability, Sappi North America. "Our reduction in carbon dioxide emissions, off this same baseline, is equivalent to annually removing over 24,000 cars from our highways. This does not happen without a strong plan to meet these goals, and more importantly, it can only happen with dedicated employees to execute that plan. We accomplished our goals against the difficulties of the COVID pandemic and continual challenges to employee wellness--a real testament to Sappi's adaptability and perseverance."
To read Sappi North America's full 2021 Sustainability Report and request a copy, please visit: http://www.sappi.com/sustainability-and-impact.