How International Paper Manages Sustainable Operations

Jan 3, 2023 12:30 PM ET

Originally published in International Paper's 2021 Sustainability Report

Our Sustainable Operations goal addresses some of our most important environmental impacts and reflects our renewed commitment to improving our footprint across our businesses, operations and value chain.

We are committed to reducing our absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions by 35% by 2030 across all three Scopes (1, 2 and 3). Directed by a high-level, cross-functional steering team, we are investing in energy efficiency and fuel-switching initiatives in our operations. Our aim is to expand our use of renewable energy and to engage with our value chain in pursuit of ambitious GHG emissions reductions.

Our water use target — the first for International Paper — commits us to reduce our operational water use intensity by 25% by 2030 while taking into consideration the broader context of the watersheds where we operate. We are mapping water use and water risk at each of our facilities to inform local water stewardship strategies.

International Paper is among the first North American pulp and paper producers to have our 35% GHG emissions reduction target approved by the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) 

Vision 2030

Goal: Improve our climate impact and advance water stewardship

Target 1 : 35%

Reduce our Scope 1, 2 and 3 GHG emissions by 35% aligned with the best-available climate science

  • Formed high-level, cross-functional steering team to lead our GHG reduction strategy
  • Developed initial pathway of opportunities to reduce GHG emissions by 35% across Scopes 1, 2 and 3
  • Received approval of our science based GHG emissions reduction target from the Science Based Targets initiative

Target 2 : 25%

Reduce our water use intensity by 25% and implement context-based water management plans at all mills

  • Set initial water reduction targets at each of our mills
  • Established a network of water champions spearheading each mill’s efforts
  • Initiated development and testing of a Context-Based Water Management framework 
  • Expanded our watershed partnership with the Savannah River Clean Water Fund where we operate two mills

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About International Paper
International Paper (NYSE: IP) is a leading global supplier of renewable fiber-based products. We produce corrugated packaging products that protect and promote goods, and enable worldwide commerce, and pulp for diapers, tissue and other personal care products that promote health and wellness. Headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., we employ approximately 38,000 colleagues globally. We serve customers worldwide, with manufacturing operations in North America, Latin America, North Africa and Europe. Net sales for 2021 were $19.4 billion. See how we’re building a better future for people, the planet, and our company at