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Speakers: Lee Henderson, Manager of European Sustainability and Stakeholder Outreach and Dr Liz Wilks, Director of European Sustainability and Stakeholder Outreach, Asia Pulp and Paper
Forestry – and in particular tropical forestry – is a subject riven with competing interests. It is at once an enormously valuable global resource in the fight against climate change – a climate regulator in its own right; it is an immensely valuable natural resource in commercial terms and therefore subject to all the competing demands this brings with it; it is a habitat for people and wildlife; it is nature’s pharmacy, containing uncountable and many as yet unknown chemical solutions to human problems.
Small wonder that it is under threat from so many counteractive pushes and pulls. Global deforestation has become a global issue, a subject of major concern to governments, NGOs, businesses, and communities.
Asia Pulp & Paper (APP) is one of the largest pulp and paper producers in the world. With a turnover of $15 billion, over 100,000 employees in Indonesia and China, and an estate covering 2.6m hectares (about the size of Wales) it is a vast enterprise – and one wholly dependent on the natural resource provided by a tropical forest climate and landscape. The company was targeted for its environmental and sustainability failings by many ENGO’s and civil society groups over the past fifteen years. It was delisted as a supplier by a great many US and European brand owning businesses. Then, just over a year ago, APP announced to a largely astonished – and sometimes cynical – world that it was putting a complete end to natural forest harvesting, and would become totally reliant on plantations for its raw material throughout its entire supply chain.
Today’s talk explains the background to this radical change – the motivations for it, the complexities of making it happen, and progress in the 14 months or so since it was announced. It tells the story of how a company is managing its evolution through a combination of technology, education, culture shift, legal compliance, and voluntary action to move from being an environmental pariah to becoming one of the foremost practitioners of a truly sustainable business model.
We will look at the forestry management issues faced in developing countries such as land grab, illegal logging, overlapping licenses, the protection of wildlife, bribery and corruption, human rights and social factors such as employee welfare, and medical assistance. We will also look at the ‘beyond compliance’ issues of reforestation, conservation assessment and practice, and plantation management.
We will discuss how new business models have come into play with new Forest Conservation Policies (FCP) and “Zero Deforestation” models, and how they fit into Integrated sustainable forestry management planning. And we will look at how a business in transition continues to thrive while fitting into national economic and environmental plans, commercial environmental supply chain policies and legislation designed to control illegal or environmentally unsound forestry management.
Lee Henderson has over 18 years’ experience in the global pulp, paper and printing industry. Key companies worked for include James McNaughton Group Ltd, MAP Merchants and manufacturing, Premier Paper Group Ltd, Antalis McNaughton Ltd and latterly Antalis International based in France.
Lee implemented the largest Chain of Custody System globally in the paper and pulp industry working with SGS Switzerland. Lee has worked with many organisations in the paper and pulp industry, this culminated in 2008 in him winning the Customer Service excellence award for People in Print.
An expert in Supply Chain management and Chain of Custody systems, a qualified lead auditor in quality and environmental management systems as well as a lead auditor for sustainable forestry management.
Lee has worked with APP for three and a half years now, leading on technical issues such as the EUTR, EU Eco-label, Blue Angel, PEFC certification, SVLK and CFCC. Certification, Legislation and Management Systems have played a key part in Lee’s training. As such, he has a keen desire for best available practice, and corrective action and continuous improvement. Lee is actively working with competent authorities (CA’s) across Europe, to help enforce and understand the EUTR. Lee works on many working groups for product stewardship, and has played an active part in the promotion of voluntary certifications such as FSC and PEFC.
Dr Wilks has a depth and wealth of knowledge in paper, packaging, and supply chain management, having worked in the industry for over ten years.
Joining Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) in 2010 Liz manages stakeholder outreach across Europe. Her current role involves communications with stakeholders on APP’s operations, including sustainability efforts.
Having worked on sustainability issues from a European perspective for many years, Liz was attracted by Asia Pulp and Paper as it offered the opportunity to explore these challenges from an Asian perspective. Having worked for APP for over 4 years, she is still overwhelmed at how such a young industry in Indonesia and China has been ready to address these issues on the world stage. This is being demonstrated through international standards such as The Global Reporting Initiative achievement of A+(GRI), PEFC and now under the framework of acceptance of the European Timber Regulations in March 2013.
Before joining APP, Dr Wilks held the position of Sustainability and CRM Director at Antalis International, the largest European group in the distribution of paper and communications. In this role Liz was responsible for Corporate Responsibility and Customer Relationship Management both in the UK and internationally across 33 countries. This meant dealing with paper suppliers and manufacturers worldwide. She also worked with certification bodies to develop international schemes to facilitate the implementation of Chain of Custody throughout the complete paper and packaging supply chain. During her 10 years in the role, Antalis International became the first distributor in the UK, as well as globally, to implement FSC and PEFC certification, meaning Liz was heavily involved in the development of a new certification standard in the industry. During this time, Liz was also an active member of EUGROPA (The European Association for Paper Merchants).