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Sustainability-Driven Innovation in the Pulp and Paper Industry

Published onAug 07, 2022
Sustainability-Driven Innovation in the Pulp and Paper Industry

21 Wake Forest J. Bus. & Intell. Prop. L. 213

The timber, pulp, and paper industries (collectively referred to as
“the Industry”) have constantly faced environmental challenges, given
how resource-intensive their operations are. Pulping and bleaching
processes not only use waste amounts of timber and water but often
include materials capable of polluting local air quality and waterways.1
Though critics view the Industry’s business model as inherently harmful
to the environment, the Industry is focused on sustainability, given the
need to preserve the resources on which the Industry depends to create
its products.

This Article considers whether the Industry can produce high-
quality, affordable, and environmentally friendly products on a large
enough scale to be profitable. Additionally, this Article examines
whether the Industry can be innovative in a sustainable manner when
confronted by disruptive situations. For example, the ongoing
coronavirus disease pandemic (“COVID”) represents the type of
challenges facing the Industry going forward. COVID disrupted global
supply chains, production lines, and consumption patterns while the
demand for paper products remained extremely high, requiring the
Industry to operate at unforeseen production levels.

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