New Alliance Formed To Promote Environmental Advances In Papermaking(Toronto, Ontario, September 23, 1993) -- Fourteen American and Canadian chemical manufacturers and forest products companies -- together representing about 160,000 employees in both countries -- today announced the formation of the Alliance for Environmental Technology (AET).
AET's mission is to promote practical, proven advances in the environmental performance of modern papermaking, and to achieve sound Canadian and American federal, state and provincial public policies. As a priority issue, AET supports chlorine dioxide, a pollution prevention technology for eliminating toxic pollutants from papermaking.
"Lost in the 'crusade against chlorine' is the recognition for the superior performance of chlorine dioxide," said Doug Pryke, Executive Director of AET. "This process alternative -- whose chemistry is fundamentally different from chlorine gas -- is without rival both in terms of environmental performance and product quality." Scientific evidence steadily mounts in its favor. In recognition of this, the US Environmental Protection Agency has publicly supported chlorine dioxide as a Best Available Technology.
There are a number of current policy debates in both Canada and the United States that will influence the future course of the North American pulp and paper industry. In Canada, the Ontario Ministry of the Environment has not yet finalized the pulp and paper effluent regulations.
In the US, President Clinton is considering an Executive Order which may include the procurement of paper made without chlorine; new legislation, the Zero Chlorine Discharge Act, has been introduced in Congress; and the Environmental Protection Agency will be announcing its recommended rule makings for pulp and paper mill effluent guidelines at the end of October.
"What we know about chlorine dioxide is surpassed only by what we do not know about the so-called totally chlorine-free (TCF) alternatives," said Pryke. "Apart from chlorine dioxide, all the other alternatives are virtual unknowns from an environmental standpoint." As the Dean of North Carolina State University's College of Forest Resources, one of America's leading pulp and paper research programs, said in a recent letter to President Clinton, "We do not know enough about the environmental impacts of a TCF mill."
"To promote any particular bleaching process based on little science would amount to a public policy blind date," added Pryke. "Without solid scientific support, such a decision flies in the face of all accepted principles of pollution prevention."
AET member companies and their headquarters are listed below:
Albchem Industries Ltd.; Bruderheim, Alberta
Celgar Pulp Co.; Castlegar, British Columbia
Domtar Inc.; Montreal, Quebec
Fraser Inc.; Edmundston, New Brunswick
Saskatoon Chemicals Ltd.; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan
Sterling Pulp Chemicals; Toronto, Ontario