KENTPRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE – 10th February2008 - 27 Audley Avenue, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1XF -
www.kentgreenparty.org 0845 257 4236 – 01732 355185 – 07747 036192
KENT PAPER MILL TO RELOCATE PRODUCTION TO FRANCE
NEW THAMES PAPER MILL AT KEMSLEY
The UK's only paper mill that can recycle and manufacture high quality office paper has announced today that it will be relocating its paper production to France at the end of the year, to be replaced with a cardboard manufacturing plant. The New Thames Paper Mill at Kemsley is of unique importance in the UK’s recycling. Paper accounts for 6% of the UK's environmental impact, which can be reduced by 93% if offices recycle to a local paper mill and then buy the paper back. .When M-Real move their production to France at the end of the year, the environmental impact of the UK’s office paper usage will increase. The move by M-real is part of a wider restructuring programme, which aims to eventually cut down capacity and costs to improve the firm's competitiveness.The firm has identified the Sittingbourne site, two paper machines in Gohrsmühle in Germany and Wifsta, M-real's fine paper mill in Sweden, for possible closure.Steve Dawe comments: “M-Real are selling the New Thames paper mill in Kent to DS Smith, who will convert the mill to produce corrugated packaging. The de-inking plant will continue to operate by the pulp produced will be sent to M-Real at Alizay in France, where it will be made into the Evolve paper product. The pulp needs to be dried before shipping, increasing energy use at the de-inking plant in Kent, reducing the amount that can be recycled by 33% and increasing transportation.
“Paper accounts for 6% of the UK’s ecological footprint. Office paper is the highest quality type of graphics paper, and being almost pure cellulose, has the highest environmental impact of all paper in manufacture. Just 36% of this paper grade is collected for recycling and the recycled content of office paper purchased in the UK is 5%. The Climate Change Levy has also made it expensive to produce paper in the UK. Although M-Real are moving for purely commercial reasons, the government should have a strategy of keeping sustainable manufacturing in the UK to enable sustainable consumption.” ends
FURTHER INFORMATION: Steve Dawe, Press Officer, KENT GREEN PARTY on 01732 355185 or mobile: 07747 036192. Contact address as above.
Notes: 1. This release draws upon material produced by the Bioregional consultancy: http://www.bioregional.com/news%20page/news_stories/lp4l/UK_mill_relocation.htm 1st February 2008 - Last recycled office paper mill in UK to stop production; Print Week: http://www.printweek.com/paper/news/600389/M-real-Sittingbourne-faces-closure/ ; Euro-investor: http://www.euroinvestor.co.uk/News/ShowNewsStory.aspx?StoryID=9718443 and the Amicus trade union.