Maker of Post-It Notes Lives Up to Promise, Begins to Eliminate Destructive Logger from Supply Chain

by Amy Moas

October 12, 2015

With help from people like you, we've seen some of the world's largest corporations make bold sustainability commitments. Today, one of those companies is living up to its promise.

Boreal Forest in Broadback Valley at Dusk

Boreal forest in Waswanipi territory at dusk.

© Greenpeace

Sustainability policies announced by corporations have been capturing quite a lot of headlines, including right here at Greenpeace. For good reason: new sustainability and zero deforestation policies are good for forests and our planet. However, progress on implementing these policies is often painstakingly slow, leaving many wondering if these commitments mean anything at all.

With help from thousands of people like you, Greenpeace has been able to secure numerous sustainability policies in recent years from some of the largest corporations in the world. And importantly, we have committed to monitoring them to ensure companies keep their promises and forests and our planet reap the benefits.

Today, we get to share the good news of a major company living up to its promise!

3M Puts Its Values Into Action

In March, we applauded multinational company 3M for its new sustainable pulp and paper policy. The company that makes Post-it Notes, Scotch Tape and other iconic products agreed to protect our most important forests, respect the rights of Indigenous People and work to increase its use of recycled and tree-free paper. This news came after Greenpeace and allies exposed 3M for being linked to a rainforest destroyer in Indonesia and buying paper from a controversial and destructive logger in Canada.

On the Indonesian front, 3M quickly stopped sourcing from APRIL’s parent company and ended its association with rainforest destruction. A few months later, APRIL itself committed to turning its chainsaws off.

3M committed to reporting publicly on its progress in implementing its policy. I have had numerous conversations with senior personnel inside 3M and they have taken the values they laid out in their policy seriously. I am happy to report today that 3M is taking the next step in it journey toward sustainable pulp and paper by beginning to eliminate controversial Canadian logging company Resolute Forest Products from its global supply chain.

Progress has already begun on securing alternative suppliers and 3M has committed to regularly report measurable progress. Greenpeace will continue to work with 3M to ensure this shift is completed.

Momentum Building to Save Canada’s Boreal Forest

Greenpeace Joins with the Cree First Nation of Waswanipi to Save the Broadback Valley

Greenpeace volunteer Claude Beauséjour and Cree First Nation Don Saganash holding banner next to the Broadback River that reads “Protect the Broadback Forest.”

Greenpeace has been calling on Resolute Forest Products to do better for years because of the company’s unsustainable forestry operations. It is degrading endangered forests, including the habitat of endangered wildlife, like the Woodland caribou. Resolute Forest Products has at times also been in conflict with First Nation Indigenous communities over the fate of their land. Since 2013, Forest Stewardship Council auditors have found violations in four of Resolute Forest Product’s certified forests covering more than 19 million acres. Following these findings, two sustainability certificates were suspended, while Resolute let the other two terminate.

To give you a sense of the on-the-ground implications of 3M’s responsible fiber sourcing policy outside of Resolute’s operations, last month we introduced you to a First Nation community fighting to protect the last remaining intact forest on its land from logging companies. The Waswanipi Cree are calling for permanent protection of the Broadback Valley, an endangered forest in Northern Quebec.

3M heard this story and senior personnel from the company traveled to the Boreal forest to meet with scientists, forestry experts and the Cree Nation. This visit is a clear sign that 3M recognizes that the rights of First Nations, the future of caribou and sustainable forest management are critical for the Boreal Forest. Greenpeace believes eliminating Resolute Forest Products from 3M’s global supply chain is an important step to align its practices with these values.

Despite the controversy surrounding Resolute Forest Products, it is possible to source truly sustainable pulp and paper from the Canadian Boreal forest today. 3M remains committed to responsible and sustainable sourcing from the Boreal, as well as job creation and the rights of First Nations. Greenpeace has strongly encouraged companies we work with to find and support truly sustainable operations in the Canadian Boreal forest.

Most recently, Greenpeace has been calling on U.S. drugstore chain Rite Aid to ensure it is not sourcing from forest destruction and adopt a sustainable paper buying policy. If 3M can do it, there is no reason to justify Rite Aid avoiding the issue and sticking its head in the sand.

Call on Rite Aid to follow 3M’s lead and make the right choice for forests.  

Amy Moas

By Amy Moas

Amy Moas, Ph.D. is a senior forest campaigner for Greenpeace based in Las Vegas. She focuses on combating the drivers of deforestation around the world including palm oil, pulp and paper, and illegal logging.

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