Published on : Tuesday, May 3, 2016
The Canadian forest products industry is pledging to help Canada move to a low-carbon economy by removing 30 megatonnes (MT) of CO2 per year by 2030 — more than 13% of the Canadian government’s emissions target.
The “30 by 30” Climate Change Challenge was issued today by the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC), making the forest sector the first to voluntarily contribute to the federal government’s climate goals. Canada has signed the Paris agreement on climate change and is now promising to reduce emissions by 30%, the equivalent of cutting 225 MT of CO2 a year by 2030.
“Our industry is uniquely positioned to be a crucial part of the solution to climate change because our renewable forests and forest products all store carbon,” says Derek Nighbor, the CEO of FPAC. “We want to step up to the plate and do our part to help Canada reach its ambitious targets”. He added further.
The forest sector has a solid record of reducing greenhouse gases from its manufacturing processes. Since 1990 for example, Canada’s pulp and paper industry has reduced GHG emissions by about 66%.
The sector has calculated the 30MT can be reached by such measures as forest management practices that can maximize carbon storage in the forest and spur the growth of trees, by increasing the use of innovative forest products and clean tech to displace materials made from fossil fuels, and by further efficiencies at mill sites.
“According to a survey of international customers by Leger Marketing, Canada’s forest products industry has the best environmental practices and reputation in the world,” says the President and CEO of Resolute Forest Products, Richard Garneau. “The forest sector is already ahead of the curve, for example in significantly cutting greenhouse gas emissions. Now our industry is taking the next step by raising the bar yet again, helping Canada reach its new climate goals.” Garneau concluded.
Ted Seraphim, President and CEO of West Fraser, adds “30 by 30 is an important challenge, and one we have the determination to achieve. Our sector, in partnership with governments at all levels, has been able to accelerate our progress to reach our ambitious targets. We are ready to step up again and make a significant contribution to Canada’s climate goals.”