Paper and water
The Dutch paper industry uses almost exclusively natural and therefore environmentally friendly additives. Paper mills use a great deal of water as a raw material, cooling agent and above all as a means of transport. The four main components used to make paper are wood fibres, additives, energy and water. More than 80 percent of the fibres and additives are recycled; the final residue, namely degraded fibrous material, is ultimately used as biofuel. Energy consumption has been successfully reduced and further reduction continues to be the focus of attention. Thanks to the efforts of IWE, water consumption has been drastically cut since 2016. Moreover, recycling water means that fewer additives are required for paper production. As a result, sustainability gains within the production chain have soared. The three paper mills (and shareholders) are: DSSmith De Hoop, Mayr-Melnhof and NeenaH Coldenhove.
Industriewater Eerbeek (IWE) processes around 4 million m³ of water every year, representing a waste load comparable to the waste water from a city the size of Utrecht.