As a result of the economic downturn the number of people employed by the European paper industry decreased by 4.8% to 185,112 between 2010 and 2012. Recent initiatives emphasise the importance the industry attaches to its social responsibilities through investment in forest certification and continuous improvements in safety standards.
The European paper industry contributes to people’s livelihoods through direct and indirect employment especially in rural areas.
According to a recent study 1 the indirect employment figure derived through the paper value chain is seven times that of direct employment
in the paper industry, with 1,597,200 people involved in Europe.
Additionally, the extensive use of certification systems in sustainable forest management adds to social benefits and improvements for forest owners and workers with systematic inclusion of social requirements. Certification can improve representation, discussion of social issues,
and relationships with stakeholder groups.
In 2010, CEPI initiated a European social dialogue with the European Mining, Chemical and Energy Workers Federation (EMCEF) under the auspices of the European Commission. In the meantime EMCEF became part of IndustriAll Europe. The dialogue continues and the two organisations developed a guide of good health and safety practices for the paper industry in 2012 (details under ‘Health and Safety’). Social Dialogue is a platform to address new challenges faced by the industry: ageing staff, lack of appeal in the industry among young workers and gap in knowledge transmission.
CEPI and IndustriAll Europe launched the good practice report on health and safety in the European paper industry in Germany in 2012. The organisations worked jointly on this new report compiling a set of 22 exemplary practices, collected from members under the auspices
of the paper sector Social Dialogue, funded with the support of the European Commission.
The good practice report addresses different types of pulp and/or paper mills and their associated health and safety issues, as well as various kinds of activities (daily operation, transport and handling, maintenance) and can in most cases be adapted and transposed.
CEPI is also a partner in the Healthy Workplaces Campaign 2012-13 ‘Working together for risk prevention’, encouraging
managers, workers and other stakeholders to join forces to improve safety and health.
The health and occupational safety of its workers is of paramount importance for the paper industry. In 2003, CEPI committed to an aspirational target of zero accidents in the workplace. The decrease in the number of accidents causing an absence of more than three days off work
can be partly attributed to falling employment levels but is also due to the ever present awareness and diligent work in mills regarding safety and incident prevention. More efficient alert systems have been introduced and companies are increasingly aware of the role prevention has to play in reducing the number of days lost as a result of health and safety issues.
Guidelines To Promote Load Safety On Road
Because load safety on road is essential, CEPI has been developing some guidelines on storage and securing of
paper products according to the principles included in the revised European standard EN 12195-1 in 2010. They mainly consist of an interpretation of the EN 12195-1 specifically dedicated for the European pulp and paper industry. These guidelines will be made available to all
pulp and paper companies and translated in several EU languages to secure a good understanding and a broad implementation by companies and supply chain partners (consignors, operators and drivers).
Rail and single wagonload transport services are of key importance for the paper industry in Europe.
The negative developments of rail freight transport over recent years and the decline of single wagonload transport services in many countries has been a growing concern. Many customers often require only small shipments, with volumes that are too low for a full train.
The demand for single wagon-load transport services remains strong however, and could grow even further if it could be relied upon. The effective and non-discriminatory access to rail infrastructure is a key enabling condition. Dedicated competitive and modern rail freight
networks and increased load capacity of wagons through a more sophisticated design would enhance rail freight attractiveness too.
CEPI has engaged in a constructive dialogue with other industry sectors such as chemicals and steel as well as the European Shippers’ Council with rail freight companies to identify viable economical and practical solutions
Paper consumption is closely correlated to a country’s develoment stage. The graph below shows that developed countries and regions such as the US, Europe and Japan consume larger amounts of paper and board (though falling), while developing countries such as Brazil, China
or India are low in paper consumption at present, but show a continuous upward trend.
Paper and Board Consumption Per Capita
Confederation Of Paper Industries ' Paperworks Site Wins Website Of The Year Award
PaperWorks has been developed to fit with modern classroom teaching techniques and facilities, and supports the Paper Industry’s aim to counter some of the common misconceptions of what has become one of the most sustainable and forward-thinking industries in the UK.