Paper / Mitos

Papermaking: Efficient and responsible production

Paper manufacturers are "dirty factories"

Myth: Paper manufacturers are "dirty factories"


The factories are environmentally very efficient.

97% of the Spanish paper production is carried out under an Environmental Management System

97% of the total production of the sector in Spain is carried out under an Environmental Management
System (ISO or EMAS).

Energy efficiency

  • Mix of fuels: biomass (23%), natural gas (73%) and others (4%).
  • The electric energy required to move the machinery and steam to dry the cellulose and paper is produced by the sector in cogeneration plants (1,135 MW of installed power) beside the factories. Cogeneration saves primary energy and reduces emissions. IDAE/ASPAPEL
  • Manufacturing all the paper a Spaniard consumes in one year produces less CO2 emissions than a single journey by car Madrid-Barcelona-Madrid. Facts by ASPAPEL and Pitney Bowes Inc. - The environmental impact of Mail: A baseline, 2008

Efficiency in water use
In the paper making process, water is used, it is not consumed. Only 5%-10% of the water used is consumed
and the remaining 90%-95% is returned after purification.  

Water use in the industrial process has been reduced by 25% since 2000 in total volume and effluent per tonne has decreased by 18% for cellulose and 56% for paper.

Efficiency in waste management in the process
81% of the waste materials in the process are recycled:
energy recovery (28%), direct agricultural use (22%) composting (9%), raw materials in other industries (6%).

ASPAPEL: Sustainability Report 2015

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