New targets for improved water usage.
SCA’s 2010 water targets were finalized in 2015; to reduce water usage in water-stressed regions by 10% by 2015, with 2010 as a base year, and to employ mechanical and biological water treatment plants in all SCA pulp and paper mills. The water usage target was achieved already in 2013 with a 10.4% reduction and, in 2015, the accumulated reduction amounted to 18.7%. SCA achieved its water treatment target in 2015 when the Kunheim tissue site in France installed biological water treatment. The Kunheim plant is the first in its industry in France to use reed-bed lagoons for biological water treatment, see chapter Water.
New water targets
In 2015, SCA adopted new water targets with focus on both effluent water volume and quality. Our tissue sites will reduce the volume of effluent water and organic content (BOD) by 10% by 2020 (base year 2015), our forest products’ mills will focus on reducing phosphorous emissions by 10%, and all sites will reduce their level of suspended solids by 10%. The new targets take a more holistic view on water, targeting the areas most material for the different business units.
Approach to water usage
The issue of water is being dealt with systematically – SCA monitors the volume and origin of the water it uses, as well as the quality of its effluent water. Most SCA mills, accounting for 97% of the Group’s water usage, are located in areas of water abundance. About 60% of the Group’s water usage is used to transport fibers during production processes and the remainder is mainly used as cooling water. 90% of the water used is drawn from surface sources.
SCA’s reporting encompasses all production sites and, in 2015, the Group used 206 million cubic meters of water (206) in pulp and paper production.
Effluent water treatment
SCA works continuously to enhance its effluent treatment and thus the quality of the effluent water discharged from its plants. Mechanical treatment removes suspended solids, sand and particles, while biological treatment extracts dissolved solids and organic impurities that affect biological oxygen demand (BOD) and chemical oxygen demand (COD).