Supporting Australian Made Paper: Why it’s So Important
Opal Australian Paper
We are working together as a group of Australian owned and operated businesses in an endeavour to support local Australian sustainable manufacturing. With growing increases in emissions due to world-wide shipping freight, we see now a better time than ever to continue to embrace and discover the new and amazing products being produced right here on our doorstep. The focus for this article is paper, which if made unsustainably can have a devastating effect on our environment, native habitats and global emissions. Which is why it is so important to support Australian Sustainably Made paper.
Opal Australian Paper is a vertically integrated local manufacturer with over 150 years of experience manufacturing pulp, paper, envelopes & stationery since 1868.
Opal Australian Paper is committed to sustainable practices throughout its operations in a way that aims to minimize the businesses impact on the environment and maximise social and economic contribution to the communities in which they operate.
Opal Australian Paper are the only Australian manufacturer of copy paper. They produce up to 600,000 tonnes of paper per year and support more than 5,700 jobs, 2,387 of those in the Latrobe Valley region alone.. Opal’s Maryvale Mill has the capacity to process up to 80,000 tonnes of local Australian office wastepaper a year that might otherwise be diverted to land fill or exported, saving up to 232,000 tonnes of CO2e annually.
Opal Australian Paper is responsible for making high quality, recyclable paper products used every day all over Australia. A commitment to sustainable growth for the next generation.
The company has partnered with SUEZ to develop a $600 million Energy from Waste facility for their Maryvale site. The project would divert approx. 650,000 tonnes of residual waste from Melbourne and Gippsland landfill. The facility will save an estimated 543,000 tonnes of carbon emissions per annum and return up to 4 Petajoules of natural gas per annum and 30MWH per hour of electricity to Victoria’s energy market. The project will support 1,046 Victorian Jobs per annum during the 3-year construction period and create 900 on-going jobs once completed. Making Opal Australian Paper Victoria’s largest generator of baseload renewable energy. Supporting Australian Made copy paper makes these local projects possible.
Opal Australian Paper’s recycling plant is capable of processing up to 80,000 tonnes of wastepaper per year.
Australian made recycled paper delivers better environmental and social outcomes compared to imported recycled papers:
- Reduces Australian landfill.
- Zero sea freight emissions compared to export of local waste.
- Promotes the recycling of local Australian waste paper.
- Supports Australian employment.
- Imported recycled papers do not help with Australian landfill.
- Gives consumers the opportunity to potentially buy back the waste paper that they recycle.
Locally Made Recycled Paper Makes Sense
Locally made recycled paper has significantly lower CO2 emissions than imported paper, mostly due to the freight emissions associated with importing paper. Studies have found one giant container ship can emit almost the same amount of harmful chemicals as 50 million cars, we have 90,000 of these currently travelling our world’s oceans every year.
Imports also reduce the demand for local recycled paper leading to increased landfill emissions. Imported paper generates 870 kg more CO2 emissions per tonne compared to locally made recycled paper.
Opal Australian Paper in 2019 procured 64,200 tonnes of office white wastepaper. They also procured 22,600 tonnes of brown waste in 2019 and supported the local recycling industry by purchasing around $22 million worth of wastepaper in 2019.
Sustainable Forestry Management
In Victoria, forests are not harvested to make paper – they are harvested for high-quality sawlog used in housing construction, furniture manufacturing and flooring industries etc.
It is the wood that does not meet the high standard for sawlog that is utilised to make paper. In this way, no part of the tree is wasted. Old growth wood is strictly not accepted into Opal Australian Papers operations.
68% of fibre is from plantation wood, 26% from regrowth state forests and 6% is from hardwood sawmill chips with 100% of Australian Paper’s wood supply sourced through local sustainable supply.
What it means to be Carbon Neutral
Opal Australian Paper’s products are certified carbon neutral under the Australian Governments’ Climate Active Carbon Neutral Standard (Climate Active) and undertake a Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) which is verified every three years by an independent auditor.Opal Australian Paper makes carbon neutral products by measuring, reducing, offsetting, reporting and auditing emissions against the Climate Active Carbon Neutral standard.
Opal Australian Made Paper Products
To be sure that the paper you are buying is sustainably Australian Made and supports Australian Manufacturing and Employment, look for the Office Products Depot, Initiative, Australian, Reflex, and Planet Ark branded copy paper which can be found online here now or at your local store today.