Cascades closes Maine deinked pulp mill
Cascades Inc., Kingsey Falls, Quebec, has announced the closure of its Auburn, Maine, deinked pulp mill. The company set a timetable for ending production July 8 and for closing its doors July 15.
“The rapid erosion of the printing and writing paper market, the overall deterioration of market conditions for deinked pulp and the low potential for integration with other Cascades activities are all factors that have had significant negative consequences for our Auburn plant,” says Luc Langevin, president and chief operating officer of Cascades Specialty Products Group. “Despite major efforts to optimize in the past year, the situation at the plant remained extremely difficult. Therefore, we are unfortunately forced to cease operations,” he adds.
Domestic OCC recovery rate nears 93 percent
The Corrugated Packaging Alliance (CPA), Itasca, Illinois, has announced that the domestic recovery of old corrugated containers (OCC) increased by 3.7 percent in 2015, pushing the figure for the year to a record 92.9 percent.
The CPA says the increase was driven by a 3.5 percent increase in domestic consumption of recovered fiber and by a 10.6 percent jump in OCC exports.
The record for 2015 follows a trend, as reported by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA), Washington, which notes that OCC recovery has been climbing steadily since the 1990s.
More than 51 percent of OCC recovered in 2015 was used to make new containerboard, which, on average, includes about 50 percent recycled content. An additional 11.5 percent was used to make boxboard, and more than 32 percent was exported.
The CPA is a corrugated industry initiative, jointly sponsored by the AF&PA; AICC (Association of Independent Corrugated Converters), Alexandria, Virginia; the Fibre Box Association (FBA), Itasca, Illinois; and TAPPI, Peachtree Corners, Georgia.
Other key paper stock grades and their patterns for 2015 were mixed. Trending downward, the recovery of old newspapers (ONP)/mechanical papers declined by 7 percent for the year. However, the AF&PA reports, new supply of the grade (domestic production plus imports less exports) declined by 11.4 percent. As a result, the overall recovery rate for the grade increased from 69.2 percent in 2014 to 72.8 percent in 2015.
The AF&PA also notes that the recovery of printing and writing paper (P&W) increased to 58.6 percent in 2015 compared with 53 percent in 2013 and with 57.7 percent in 2014. Despite the increase, the association notes the actual tonnage of P&W papers recovered for recycling declined 3.3 percent in 2015, but new supply dropped an even sharper 4.9 percent.
In total, domestic paper recovery increased by 1.4 percent in 2015 to a record 66.8 percent.
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