Paper vs. Planet
Former vice president Al Gore presented the facts in the Academy Award-winning documentary “An Inconvenient Truth.”
Actor and environmentalist, Leonardo DiCaprio created his own eco-site to inform others of environmental issues since 2000.
Curbing carbon dioxide emissions to reduce the threat of global warming clearly is a hot topic. And now that President Obama has been elected, his administration appears to be committed to the cause.
For instance, the administration’s $787 billion stimulus package includes $39 billion for the Department of Energy and $20 billion in tax incentives for clean energy. Obama’s budget calls for investing billions in research aimed to reduce climate change and guaranteeing loans for companies that develop clean energy technologies.
With Obama in office, officials close to the issue said it’s no longer an “if,” but a “when” will legislators adopt tough laws that focus on polluters, including those in the paper industry, cutting greenhouse gas emissions.
“With the new Congress and the Obama administration, climate change is a major topic,” said Amanda Sauer, senior associate in the markets and enterprise program at the Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit environmental think tank World Resources Institute. “It’s no longer 10 or 20 years away.”
Sauer went on to say industries are most likely to see the government adopt something similar to Obama’s proposed cap-and-trade program on greenhouse gas emissions. A cap-and-trade system is a policy tool that aims to protect the environment and everyone’s health by setting a maximum limit on emissions. The right to emit carbon would be auctioned off to generate revenue for more government spending programs.
With all of this talk, Sauer urged companies to begin preparations. “Become more efficient, improve energy, maximize logistics, reduce dependencies on fossil fuels and think about connecting to biomass boilers,” she explained.
Biomass boilers are a no-brainer for paper mills considering they burn wood. Sauer continued, saying boilers that burn wood are much less harmful because they don’t bring any more carbon into the atmosphere.