Recovered paper is an important fibre source for Norske Skog.
Some customers want paper based entirely on recovered paper. However, a value chain based only on recovered paper is not sustainable. About one third of the paper is lost in the recovered paper cycle.
Factors such as consumer awareness, waste disposal and collection systems and alternative uses for used paper influence its collection rate.
Norske Skog and its Australian publisher partners have worked together through the Publishers National Environment Bureau (PNEB) for many years to maximise newspaper and magazine recycling. It was through this alliance that our recycling plant at the Albury Mill was built in 1993. Today these partnerships extend much further than just the Publishers with a significant portion of our customers providing us with their waste for recycling.
Recycling old newspapers and magazines requires first that any contaminates be removed, mainly staples, glue and plastic wraps. The paper is then mixed with water in a large pulping vat which starts the cleaning and de-inking process and returns it to the pulp form. De-inking is achieved by mixing this pulp with soap and aeration to separate the ink from the fibres.
To make the recovered paper value chain sustainable, fresh fibre from forests, plantations or sawmill by-products must be added. The minimisation of transport distances and costs is an increasingly important economic and environmental consideration.
In Australia over 100,000 tonnes of old newspaper and magazines are recycled back into newsprint each year.