Submitted by: The Two Sides Team October 29, 2020
As water is a crucial resource for the industry, most pulp and paper mills are located near abundant supplies. In Europe, most mills utilise surface water, such as rivers and lakes (89% of intake), with some taken from own supplies of groundwater (10%) and the rest from public water supplies (4%). Since the 1990s, the average water intake per tonne has decreased by 47%.
It is also important to recognise that intake does not equal consumption because most of the water will be returned to the environment. 93% of the water used in the European paper industry is returned to the environment in good quality (having been reused within the mill before being suitably treated), with the remainder either being evaporated, staying within the product, or being bound-up in solid waste.
Download our Paper’s Water Footprint fact sheet to find out more.