Burnaby-based Hemlock Printers is the first customer of Novex Couriers’ electric-powered fleet for daily freight and courier deliveries primarily in Burnaby, Vancouver and Richmond.
The 100-percent electric delivery service provided by Novex is based on trucks manufactured by Smith Electric Vehicles U.S., which licenses the technology from a U.K.-based parent company self-described as the world’s largest manufacturer of commercial electric vehicles. In March 2010, Smith Electric was selected to receive $32 million in grant funding from the U.S. Department of Energy to produce its vehicles.
"We are excited to participate in this initiative with our clients being among the first in Canada to receive emission-free deliveries.," stated Richard Kouwenhoven, Hemlock VP of Client Services. "It's another significant step for us as we look to green all aspects of our operation."
The delivery initiative fits with Hemlock's recently introduced carbon-neutral printing program, called Zero, which aims to reduce operational greenhouse gas emissions 33 percent by 2020. According to Hemlock, each electric truck will save approximately 29 tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions yearly, which is equivalent to taking six cars off the road.
"It is important to have partners like Hemlock who are willing to show leadership in using zero emission vehicles to deliver their product,” stated Ken Johnston, Novex President. "Novex has made a commitment to do the right thing for our environment, and the shift to zero emission vehicles is the
future of the delivery business."
The Lowe-Martin Group continues to develop its environmental strategy, after recently receiving a $25,000 rebate cheque from Hydro Ottawa for its participation in the Electricity Retrofit Incentive Program.
The cheque presentation by The Honourable Brad Duguid, Ontario’s Minister of Energy and Infrastructure, and Rosemarie Leclair, President and CEO of Hydro Ottawa, was made on June 10 at Lowe-Martin's Ottawa printing facility.
“At The Lowe-Martin Group we believe in reducing the impact we have on the environment and our success at reducing our energy consumption has contributed significantly to achieving that goal,” stated Ward Griffin, President and CEO of Lowe-Martin.
The Electricity Retrofit Incentive Program (ERIP), headed by Hydro Ottawa in cooperation with the Ontario Power Authority, is a provincial rebate program that provides financial incentives to influence its customers to undertake projects to improve both the energy efficiency of their facilities and their bottom line.
Among several energy-use programs instituted at Lowe-Martin, the company highlights its T5 lighting retrofit, which has a 66 percent longer lamp life than the previously installed system, as a significant step forward in energy conservation. According to the company, its T5 retrofit provides energy savings of over 370,000 kilo-watt hours per year.
In January 2009, Lowe Martin also received the Hydro Ottawa Companies for Conservation Award. The company has also received an award for Most Environmentally Progressive Printer in Canada for the past four years in PrintAction's Environmental Printing Awards program.
Last week, 21 member companies of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC), and nine environmental organizations, unveiled what the groups involved refer to as an unprecedented agreement. The Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement applies to 72-million hectares of public forests licensed to FPAC members, an area described to be twice the size of Germany.
When fully implemented, Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement is designed to conserve significant areas of Canada’s Boreal Forest and protect woodland caribou, while still allowing the forestry companies to maintain a competitive market edge. The FPAC members are said to manage two-thirds of all certified forestland in Canada.
The Agreement calls for the suspension of new logging on nearly 29-million hectares of Boreal Forest to develop conservation plans for endangered caribou, while maintaining essential fiber supplies for uninterrupted mill operations. “Do Not Buy” campaigns by Canopy, ForestEthics and Greenpeace will be suspended while the Agreement is being implemented.
“The importance of this Agreement cannot be overstated,” said Avrim Lazar, President and CEO of FPAC. “FPAC member companies and their ENGO counterparts have turned the old paradigm on its head. Together, we have identified a more intelligent, productive way to manage economic and environmental challenges in the Boreal that will reassure global buyers of our products’ sustainability.
“It’s gratifying to see nearly a decade of industry transformation and hard work greening our operations, is culminating in a process that will set a forestry standard that will be the envy of the world.”
Participating forestry companies:
AbitibiBowater, Alberta Pacific Forest Industries, AV Group, Canfor, Cariboo Pulp & Paper, Cascades, DMI, F.F. Soucy, Howe Sound Pulp and Paper, Kruger, LP Canada, Mercer International, Mill & Timber Products, NewPage Port Hawkesbury, Papier Masson, SFK Pulp, Tembec, Tolko Industries, West Fraser Timber, and Weyerhauser.
Participating environmental organizations:
Canadian Boreal Initiative, Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Canopy (formerly Markets Initiative), the David Suzuki Foundation, ForestEthics, Greenpeace, Ivey Foundation, The Nature Conservancy, and Pew Environment Group.
Vancouver's Metropolitan Fine Printers has partnered with Pacific Carbon Trust, a B.C. Crown Agency, to become fully carbon neutral for all of its printed goods.
The company, led by George Kallas, has a long history of environmental awareness, and is the recipient of several Environmental Printing Awards from PrintAction.
"It was only natural that we move to Carbon Neutrality. From now on, everything printed here at Metropolitan will be 100 percent carbon neutral and clients will have the option to buy carbon credits to offset their paper consumption on a per project basis. We are very excited and happy with this accomplishment," said Kallas in a statement.
The Pacific Carbon Trust has so far partnered with six B.C. companies to provide carbon offsets, including Westcoast Air, the Vancouver Aquarium and BC Hydro's Power Smart program. The agency's aim is to build and promote B.C.'s "low carbon economy." The agency started dealing in offsets last summer.
"Metropolitan is not only setting the bar for the printing industry, but has a unique opportunity to send a message of sustainability to its many clients. We are pleased to be a part of that important message - congratulation Metropolitan on achieving carbon neutrality," said Scott MacDonald, CEO of Pacific Carbon Trust.
The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) Inc., after an 18-month review, has released a new standard for its forest management certification program. The new SFI 2010-2014 standard focuses on the North American market, while, according to SFI, also providing a greater ability to avoid unwanted offshore sources.
The new standard also places more emphasis on social issues surrounding forest management. SFI, for more than a decade, has focused on programs to engage the logging community, for example. Since 1995, more than 117,000 loggers have received training through SFI-supported programs. The SFI program also collaborates with the American Tree Farm System to increase forest certification on family forest lands.
“The new standard's fiber sourcing requirements continue to support family forest owners in protecting threatened and endangered species, promoting reforestation and strengthening best management practices to protect water quality," said Kathy Abusow, President and CEO of SFI Inc. "In fact, it now explicitly requires this valuable assistance, along with programs to address Forests with Exceptional Conservation Value when working directly with family forest landowners."
More than 180-million acres (73 million hectares) are currently certified to the SFI forest management standard in North America, which, according to the organization, makes it the largest single standard in the world for forest certification.
SFI lists the following objectives as a direct result of its revisions:
• Improve conservation of biodiversity in North America and offshore, and address emerging issues such as such as climate change and bioenergy;
• Strengthen unique SFI fiber sourcing requirements, which broaden the practice of sustainable forestry in North America and avoid unwanted offshore sources;
• Complement SFI activities aimed at avoiding controversial or illegal offshore fibre sources, and embrace Lacey Act amendments to prevent illegal logging;
• Expand requirements for logger training and support for trained loggers and certified logger programs.
Cascades East Angus, a division of Cascades Canada Inc., received certifications from the Forest Stewardship Council for what the company describes as the majority of its unbleached Kraft paper products.
The company achieved both FSC Recycled and FSC Mixed Sources certifications on its different Kraft grades. Cascades East Angus sells products with various levels of post-consumer content, up to 100 percent, while some of the products also carry EcoLogo certification.
Employing over 250 people, the Cascades East Angus mill manufactures more than 60 grades of Kraft paper products, including lawn and leaf bags, envelopes, foodservice bags and paper for the construction industry.
Several forest companies operating along the West Coast have outlined the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement, which includes stronger conservation targets for the world's largest tract of coastal temperate rainforest – and the Kermode Bear.
First presented in mid-December, initial signatories to the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement include Western Forest Products, Interfor and BC Timber Sales, with added support coming from pulp and paper producers Catalyst Paper and Howe Sound Pulp and Paper (partly owned by Canfor).
The agreement initially designates 1-million hectares of one of Canada’s most-pristine forests under Forest Stewardship Council Certification. Situated along the central and north coasts of British Columbia, the Great Bear Forest is named after the highly recognizable Kermode Bear, more commonly known as the Spirit Bear.
About 1/10 of the Kermode population, a subspecies of the Black Bear, is born with white or cream-coloured coats. These Spirit Bears figure prominently in the mythology of First Nations in the region.
As a result of the Great Bear Rainforest Agreement, $120 million in new financing is being earmarked to local and First Nations communities for conservation initiatives. The agreement is designed to eventually protect 2.1 million hectares of the rainforest, while “lighter-touch logging” is to take place in another 700,000 hectares of high-value tracts. The agreement, which was supported in the marketplace by Canopy, Greenpeace, ForestEthics and Sierra Club, is to be finalized by 2014.
Read more about the Great Bear Rainforest:
Joel Silver, Chief Merchant with Indigo Books & Music, spearheaded an initiative that results with Indigo becoming the first international retailer to display the environmental performance of books that it supplies on store shelves.
Indigo Books & Music began working with Vancouver-based Canopy a few years ago to develop a more environmentally progressive supply policy, which greatly affects book manufacturers because of Indigo’s dominance in Canada’s retail sector with its Indigo and Chapters stores. In its last fiscal year, the company generated over $875 million in revenues.
Now, Indigo customers are able to see which books are printed on papers containing recycled and/or Forest Stewardship Council fibre. Customers can check up on a book’s green condition by logging onto Indigo’s Website or by accessing in-store kiosks. In its latest quarter alone (ended in September, before the Christmas rush), Indigo’s online channel accounted for sales of $20 million.
According to Canopy, Indigo is the first book retailer in the world to take this step. Canopy, the NGO that played a large role in the greening of the Harry Potter series, suggests Indigo’s new model and targets can potentially result in as much as a 50-percent reduction in virgin wood content in books.
Eco-paper experts from Canopy are reaching out to Canada's printing public with the launch of an online survey to assess the North American market interest for papers made from agricultural residues.
“This study is the first of its kind in North America. Up until now, information about the market viability of non-wood paper has been anecdotal,” says Neva Murtha, Second Harvest Campaigner with Canopy, a non-profit based in Vancouver that focuses on environmental paper supply. “When done, we’ll be able to translate demands for eco-paper into initiatives that help make straw papers a North American reality.”
Last year, Canopy worked with Ottawa-based Dollco Printing in a successful trial to produce Canadian Geographic magazine on an agricultural-residue paper, called the Wheat Sheet. The project marked a North American first, which Canopy claims to have raised much interest from “large paper consumers,” despite the lack of North American supply in agricultural-residue-based paper.
Canopy’s survey is designed to help the organization identify new and emerging opportunities for environmental paper development. Data collection for the study, around issues like tonnage demand and priority grades, is to target publishers, printers and office retailers.
Participate in Canopy survey.
Cascades was recognized by Pulp and Paper International (PPI) for its advanced use of bio-energy at the first edition of the PPI Awards. The biogas energy project was chosen within the global pulp and paper sector as the most innovative and viable use of local and renewable energy. Cascades' biogas initiative was also previously honoured by the PrintAction's own Environmental Printing Awards in 2007 and 2008.
Cascades, in partnership with Waste Management and Gaz Metro, captures the methane gas from landfills and transports it to the Rolland mill by an 8-mile pipeline. The biogas is then combusted to power the paper machines.
This project has been implemented as a strategic development for the company. “At a time when the Rolland mill was struggling for its survival, an employee came up with the great idea to use methane from landfill instead of natural gas," said Mario Plourde, President and COO of Cascades Specialty Products Group. "Its implementation provided us the ability to reduce and stabilize energy costs, while favouring local suppliers.”
Overall, the biogas project sustains the economical, environmental and social ideals of the company. Its use reduces green house gas emissions by 60,000 tons annually, the equivalent of removing 15,000 cars from the road. It also lessens energy costs and, according to Cascades, helps to secure more than 500 jobs.
Claiming it to be a first-of-its-kind in Canada, and likely one of the only such initiatives in the world, Hemlock Printers has introduced a carbon-neutral printing program, called Zero, for environmentally progressive clients.
Zero is described as a 3-step program in which clients can purchase carbon offsets and neutralize their climate impact. The carbon-offset purchase supports renewable-energy and energy-efficiency projects by third parties, predominantly in the greater Vancouver area where Hemlock is located.
"We developed Zero because we recognize that climate change is unequivocally the greatest challenge facing the planet today," said Dick Kouwenhoven, President and CEO of Hemlock. "The print industry contributes to this impact so we are taking action in a number of ways to reduce our footprint. The Zero program is a concrete way that we can make some changes today for the benefits of tomorrow."
Hemlock Printers was announced as Canada’s first carbon-neutral printer back in mid-2009, although the company achieved this operating environment in 2008 with the help of a carbon-management company called Offsetters, which is the official supplier of carbon offsets to the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.
Offsetters also aided Hemlock’s development of the Zero program, which is specifically designed to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions at every stage of the paper lifecycle.
"Hemlock does not produce paper, but we purchase it and have it shipped to us, print on it and then deliver the final product to our customers," said Richard Kouwenhoven, VP of Client Services at Hemlock. "The lifecycle of paper from forest, to mill, transport, printing and then disposal/recycling, emits CO2 at every stage. We want to work with our customers to reduce this impact."
After ForestEthics publicly challenged the credibility of Sustainable Forest Initiative in September, the Coalition for Fair Forest Certification, with many members part of the SFI, have fired back, claiming that FSC "engages in unfair and deceptive trade practices."
A New York Times report outlines the skirmish, which is mainly focused on certification of construction materials in LEED buildings. The U.S. Green Business Council is in the process of developing benchmarks for reasonably sourced materials, benchmarks which the Coalition says are just parroting FSC standards and which many Coalition members would not pass.
"They’re attempting to put a green label on status quo practices," Corey Brinkema, President of FSC's U.S. operations, told the New York Times. "FSC will fight that. Otherwise, the value won’t be there and we will all lose."
Domtar Corp. announced the sale of its millionth ton of Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified paper, under the Domtar EarthChoice brand. The company manufactured its first FSC-certified ton back in 2002.
All Domtar EarthChoice products are certified to FSC standards, publicly supported by WWF-Canada and endorsed by Rainforest Alliance. Domtar currently has over 40 FSC-certified sites, including 11 paper mills, three market pulp mills, 14 offsite converting operations as well as regional replenishment centres across North America.
"I would like to thank our nearly 10,500 employees, our loyal customers and our supplier partners for helping us reach this milestone,” said John Williams, President and CEO of Domtar. The company claims to be the largest integrated manufacturer and marketer of uncoated freesheet paper in North America and the second largest in the world based on production capacity.
At the third-annual Paper Futures Forum in Toronto, Canopy presented Jean Denault, VP, Procurement and Technology, of Transcontinental Inc., and Joel Silver, Chief Merchant Officer of Indigo Books & Music Inc., with The Order of the Forest awards.
Since 2003, Canopy, formerly known as Markets Initiative, has presented The Order of the Forest – the NGO’s take on The Order of Canada – to environmentally progressive leaders active within the printing and publishing industries. While early recognition went primarily to Big Name Canadian authors, such as Margaret Atwood, Austin Clarke, Barbara Gowdy and the late Pierre Berton, more print-specific leaders are now emerging for recognition.
Earlier in 2009, Krista Nicholds, co-President of Dollco Printing, and Kim Latreille, Group Production Director of St. Joseph Media, also received The Order of the Forest recognition. Denault has led much of Transcontinental’s environmental stance, which most recently added groundbreaking Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) status for its Freemont plant in California – opened in mid-2009 to print The San Francisco Chronicle.
The Order of the Forest recipients
Jean Denault, VP, Procurement and Technology, Transcontinental Inc.
Joel Silver, Chief Merchant Officer, Indigo Books
Kim Latreille, Group Production Director, St. Joseph Media
Krista Nicholds, Co-President and Owner, Dollco Printing
Tuppy Blair, President, CMC
Michael Hollett, Publisher, Now magazine
Yves Beauchemin, author
Rick Boychuk, Editor-in-Chief, Canadian Geographic
Ken Alexander, Editor, The Walrus
Sharon Coates, Production Manager, The Walrus
Mark Patenaude, GM, St. Joseph Print
J.K. Rowling, author
Christopher Little, author
Les Intouchables, publishing house
Écosociété, publishing house
Jodi Brooks, Production Manager, explore and Cottage Life
Maria Mendes, Manager of Print Production, Transcontinental Media
Christian Dogimont, Publisher, HoBO
Multi-Mondes, Québec City publishing house
Louis Hamelin, author
Alice Munro, author
Alma Lee, author
Al Zikovitz, Publisher of explore
Peter Ter Weeme, VP Marketing, Mountain Equipment Co-op
Alison Jones, Publisher, Quill & Quire
Lynn O'Hearn, Sales, St. Joseph Print
Gallimard Limitée, publishing house
Margaret Atwood, author
Alan McDougall, Raincoast Books
Geoffrey Taylor, International Festival of Authors
John Thomson, Publisher, Canadian Geographic
Austin Clarke, author
Timothy Findlay, author
Pierre Berton, author
Barbara Gowdy, author
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