Sequana’s overall Corporate Social & Environmental Responsibility (CSR) strategy focuses on the Group’s four main challenges and seven related priorities:
- Natural resources,
- Human resources,
- Product offering.
In choosing to refer to ISO 26000 as its standard, the Group guarantees that the main impacts of its paper businesses are taken into account.
Read more: CSR Strategy
United Nations Global Compact
Arjowiggins has been a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact since September 2012, attesting to its commitment to the ten fundamental principles in the areas of human rights, labour law, the environment and anti-corruption.
Environmental responsibility requires Arjowiggins to manage natural resources responsibly and to mitigate the impacts of its business.
Three major environmental priorities have been identified:
- Traceability of raw materials,
- Energy use,
- Water management.
Our strategy involves:
- Reducing the use of materials at source (virgin fibres, energy, water)
- Opting for responsible supply sources (recycled fibres, renewable energy, closed water loops)
- Sound stewardship of effluent outflows (recycling, atmospheric emissions and water discharges)
Improving energy efficiency
The ISO 50001 standard addresses an energy management system designed for continuous efficiency improvement. Arjowiggins Graphic’s mills at Bessé-sur-Braye, Le Bourray and Château-Thierry (France) have been ISO 50001 certified since early 2014. This approach has enabled the company to reduce its energy consumption by 2.6%, well above the 2% target set for 2014. CO2 emissions per tonne of paper produced were reduced by 1.9%, i.e. 3.7% in absolute value.
The ISO 50001 certification process is underway in the other Arjowiggins divisions. At the end of 2015, 5 sites out of 16 are ISO 500001 certified.
In order to ensure full transparency for all stakeholders, Sequana has published a policy of responsible sourcing for paper-based materials, paper pulp and cotton-based products.
Under this policy, Arjowiggins sends an annual questionnaire to its pulp and cotton suppliers.
In all of its businesses, Arjowiggins is committed to supporting its customers in their sustainable approach, and offers eco-friendly products and services as well as Chain-of-Custody guarantees.
Certification of Arjowiggins sites (1)
(1) ) 2015 data calculated on 16 Arjowiggins mills.
(2) FSC®certifications of sites guarantee compliance with stringent environmental, social and economic criteria along the entire chain of custody. All Arjowiggins’ sites are FSC®-certified.
(3) ISO 14001 Certification attests to the Group’s commitment to developing an environmental management system based on continuous performance improvement.
Product certifications of Arjowiggins Graphic
- FSC®(1) certification
- European Ecolabel certification of the products monitored by the EU Commission, guaranteeing that the certified paper has the lowest environmental footprint.
- Blue Angel certification guaranteeing the exclusive use of recycled fibres, without any use of optical brighteners.
- Nordic Swan certification, official eco-label system used in Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden.
(1) Forest Stewardship Council
Reducing the environmental footprint
The implementation of a biomass-to-energy plant (boiler burning wood chips) at the Palalda mill (France) in 2014 has enabled Arjowiggins Healthcare to reduce significantly its dependence on fossil fuels and improve its environmental footprint.
In order to ensure the quality of the released effluents and prevent any pollution, single or dual wastewater treatment(1) plants (WWTP) are installed at all Arjowiggins mills. The WWTPs collect the effluents and depurate them in successive steps (settling, physiochemical treatments, biofiltration as needed), before releasing the treated wastewater back into the natural environment without any risk of environmental pollution.
Nearly 13.8 million cubic metres of treated water out of 15.5 million cubic metres used in 2015 were released safely into the natural environment in 2014, i.e. over 89%.
(1) Physiochemical or physiochemical and biological treatment
“Our rule is clear: safety first is an absolute priority for everyone at all times.”
Pascal Lebard, Chairman & CEO of Arjowiggins
In the context of the 2012-2015 H&S plan, the overriding goal of Arjowiggins is to strengthen the training path on occupational safety.
Its main actions include:
- securing the safety of paper machines and finishing equipment,
- risk assessment and dynamic analysis procedures.
After 3 consecutive years of decline, the incident rate with lost-time incident at Arjowiggins increased in 2015 to reach 18.7*.
* These results do not reflect any general deterioration, but rather affect a limited number of sites where action plans were initiated in the last quarter of the year.
As regards occupational health, Arjowiggins continuously focuses on the reduction of occupational illness risks linked to working conditions.
Back in 2013, the Group developed a definition of eco-friendly products that is both simple and transparent to help its customers choose the most responsible and eco-friendly solutions, based on the two major environmental impacts of paper throughout its lifecycle:
- Use of raw materials, and
- Manufacturing process
The requirements related to each of these impacts correspond to internationally recognised standards:
- Raw materials that are at least FSC®– or PEFC-certified, and ideally 100% recycled from post-consumer recycled fibres
- Manufacturing sites that are at least ISO 14001-certified, and ideally European Ecolabel® certified
Benefits of recycled paper
Using recycled paper helps to reduce environmental impacts. Manufacturing recycled paper consumes relatively few natural resources and helps to:
- Reduce the use of virgin fibres, thereby reducing pressure on forests,
- Use less energy than needed to produce virgin pulp (50% less),
- Divide by 3 the water requirements in manufacturing processes
- Reduce the volume of waste to be incinerated or landfilled, while also boosting the local economy through the collection and sorting of waste paper
Recycled paper also reduces emissions of greenhouse gases:
- Producing recycled paper generates between 20% and 50% less CO2 emissions than paper produced from virgin fibres over the entire lifecycle
- Manufacturing recycled paper also reduces CO2 emissions linked to transport since waste paper is usually sourced in the vicinity of recycled paper mills
In order to help its customers consume more responsibly on the basis of clear and enlightened information, Arjowiggins Graphic provides an eco-calculator on its website to calculate the reduced environmental impact of recycled products.
The intrinsic nature of the products sold by the Group presents minimal hazards for the health and safety of consumers. Arjowiggins has set up dedicated procedures guaranteeing full compliance with the REACH regulation (Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals).
With the goal of embedding our actions into the local economic, social and cultural fabric, Arjowiggins leads various outreach initiatives focused on culture, education and health.
Examples of initiatives conducted in 2015
Since 2012, Arjowiggins Graphic has supported the NGO SOS Children Villages. The funds raised in 2015 helped finance the schooling expenses and materials for pre-school children in the 4 SOS Children Village in Madagascar.
Arjowiggins Graphic signed a partnership on the occasion of the first Graphic Design Festival, an international event fully dedicated to the development, promotion and dissemination of graphic arts and design.