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Sappi North America releases 2016 sustainability report

Sappi North America, a producer and supplier of diversified paper and packaging products, has announced the release of its 2016 sustainability report.

The report showcases Sappi's industry leading sustainability performance.

"Each year, we look forward to reporting our progress against the five year goals we set to ensure that Sappi North America continues as a thriving, sustainable, re-investable paper and paper-based packaging company," said Mark Gardner, President and CEO, Sappi North America.

"In addition to our award-winning environmental practices, this year, I am also proud of the continued innovation in our products, reinvestment in our business and commitment to safety by our employees and stakeholders. We have an eye to the future and we're eager to see what the next year brings."

In 2015, Sappi Limited established an aspirational vision for the future that was structured around concrete, measurable initiatives with clear baselines for performance.

The goal to become a truly diversified wood fiber group, targeting a substantial increase in EBITDA through an expanded product portfolio, reflects Sappi's confidence in its ability to evolve with the changing world; continually maintain and improve returns in mature markets; and deliver top-line growth in newer businesses, like consumer-based packaging.

From realizing on major innovations such as Neoterix™ ST, the first casting and release paper that creates surfaces that inhibit bacterial growth without the use of toxic additives or chemicals, to  major reinvestment projects at its Somerset Mill Woodyard and the recently announced $165 million Paper Machine 1 rebuild, Sappi North America is poised to continue its success through 2017 and beyond.

Sappi North America's sustainability goals are segmented according to the three most critical elements of its business: People, Planet and Prosperity.

Collectively these goals account for an aggressive approach to increasing safety and education for Sappi employees, building returns on net operating assets through increases in operational efficiency; and reducing energy and raw material waste. Some of this year's performance highlights include:

Sappi maintained its commitment to responsible sourcing with 100 percent of its fiber procured in accordance with the SFI® Fiber Sourcing standard, as well as the FSC® Controlled Wood standard; 54 percent of its total fiber came from certified sources.

Sappi's Cloquet Mill reached multiple safety milestones, including reaching one million work hours without a loss time injury twice in the fiscal year, ending with a total LTIFR of 0.13.

Sappi remains the manufacturer with the lowest carbon footprint out of all domestic producers of coated freesheet papers in the US, and its combined direct and indirect emissions total just 0.38 tons CO2/ton of product.

The solid waste sent to landfills reached its lowest level in the past five years, due in large part to the continued expansion of Sappi's beneficial use program where by-products are used by local landowners as a soil amendment.

Additionally, our mutually beneficial sustainability efforts are being recognized outside of Sappi. In 2016, the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA) awarded Sappi with the AF&PA Leadership in Sustainability Award for Energy Efficiency and Greenhouse Gas Reduction for creating a process to capture excess heat and reuse it elsewhere in the manufacturing process.

According to Donna Harman, President and CEO of the AF&PA, "Sappi's Hood Heat Recovery Project at Somerset is a shining example of how improvements to industry infrastructure can benefit the environment as well as the bottom line."