Fairfax Media is committed to reducing its impact on the environment and engaging with its employees, business partners and audiences on the issues of energy use and climate change.
With the Commonwealth Government and leading newsprint supplier, Norske Skog, and others, Fairfax Media is a co-signatory to the National Environmental Sustainability Agreement. The Company maintains a strong commitment to using sustainable technologies and materials such as inks with a vegetable oil base and newsprint from sustainable sources. Fairfax print facilities are proactive about waste minimisation, recycling, water management and energy efficiency.
Each facility sets weekly targets for the reduction of newsprint and ink-related waste. Sites are benchmarked against each other and against the wider industry to ensure that best-practice processes are in place. In the 2014 financial year, Fairfax’s printing plants reduced printed waste by 16% over the previous year through a combination of reduced print volumes and improved efficiency. Fairfax’s printing division is also a member of the Publishers’ National Environment Bureau (PNEB), an association of Australian newspaper and magazine publishers known as The Newspaper Works that promotes the sustainable recovery of old newspapers and magazines.
The Publishers National Environment Bureau (PNEB), an association of Australia’s leading newspaper and magazine publishers have been working since 1990 to promote the sustainable recovery of old newspapers and magazines. Australia has been recognised as having the highest newspaper recycling rate in the world. Fairfax, in conjunction with the PNEB, has been working to promote the sustainable recovery of old newspapers and Magazines. Together we have been able to help lift Australia’s newspaper recycling rate from 28% in 1990, to a recycling rate of almost 80% in 2009.
Australian made newsprint contains 20-40% recycled fibre from old newspapers. The rest is wood fibre which comes from waste products of the timber industry: sawlog off cuts; forest thinning’s (branches and small trees that are removed from plantations to allow room for other trees to grow); plus the residue when a plantation is harvested to produce wood for housing and construction. All wood fibre is sourced from sustainably managed timber plantations.
Every year, 100,000 tonnes of recovered newspapers and 60,000 tonnes of magazines are de-inked and processed into new newsprint at the Norske Skog recycling plant in Albury, NSW. The rest – about 490,000 tonnes – is used in cardboard manufacture, exported for newsprint production, or recycled into an array of other paper products, such as home insulation, egg cartons and kitty litter.
Fairfax Media Printing is committed to operating an environmentally responsible and sustainable business, with a focus on reducing waste whilst reusing recycling materials in the printing process. We are actively continuing to explore and implement creative and effective ideas to reduce our carbon footprint and consumption of water.
Fairfax Media prioritises suppliers who also have a commitment to reducing their environmental impact, for instance its newsprint and magazine paper producer Norske Skog Tasman holds ISO 14001 international accreditation. Fairfax Media source their magazine paper from mills that are FFC and PEFC certifiied. This means that there is a Chain of Custody in the process that ensures environmental compliance of the original wood fibre.
Our activities and work in carrying out environmentally friendly processes has led to accreditation ISO 14001:2004 – Environmental Management System and more recently, certification within the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC) Chain of Custody program.