APRIL Responds to EPN Commentary

APRIL2030 microsite.

Sustainable Forest Management Policy 2.0
We reiterate that the commitments made under our Sustainable Forest Management Policy (SFMP 2.0) remain the principles on which APRIL2030 is founded.

Over the past five years of implementation, steady progress has been made. The mills have been running on 100% plantation fiber since December 2015 and there has been no new plantation development and no deforestation in APRIL’s concessions. While there are active land claims, there have been no social conflicts in our operational areas. There has been limited loss to fire and active protection and management of 370,000 ha of conservation and restoration areas,

APRIL’s performance against SFMP 2.0 has been under the independent oversight of the Stakeholder Advisory Committee (SAC). KPMG PRI Canada conducts an annual verification of APRIL’s performance against its implementation and produces a public report on their findings and APRIL’s corresponding close out action plan. The verification framework, along with the indicators, was the result of public consultations and included inputs from external stakeholders, including NGOs.

The audit reports, which transparently assure the progress that APRIL has made in delivering on its SFMP and identify opportunities for improvement, are published on the company’s Sustainability Dashboard. We actively work to resolve land tenure matters through a Land Dispute Resolution Procedure, which guides the settlement, and resolution of disputes, no matter the complexity or how long it takes to achieve a resolution. This is supported by participation in multi-stakeholder forums.

Peatland management
We acknowledge that our operations on peatland are a key area of concern and that we have a legal obligation to manage those concessions in the most responsible way possible. To do this, we have invested heavily in science, tools and best management practices to balance the production from these ecosystems with conservation and restoration.

We acknowledge our plantation forestry operations on peatland generate greenhouse gas emissions. In recent years, we have been collecting data to measure and monitor these emissions across different land use types to inform our approach to emissions reduction and mitigation.

International forest certification
Since 2010, APRIL Group has been certified under the PEFC (Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification) standards, ensuring that all raw materials coming into the mill are from noncontroversial sources. Around 87% of the total concession area is certified under the PEFC-Sustainable Forest Management certification system, which gives independent recognition of APRIL’s responsible forest management practices.

As part of the ongoing process to end its disassociation with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), APRIL has acknowledged the impact of its operations since 1993 as identified through the FSC baseline assessment. We are committed to engage in a constructive and robust process of remediation to end our disassociation with the FSC.

NGO reports
The EPN article also included references to a number of NGO reports. APRIL has already provided detailed, fact-based responses for all of the issues raised in these publications. Our responses can be viewed on this website. We have offered the concerned NGOs the opportunity to ground truth the results of our investigation but to date, none have expressed any interest in this invitation.

APRIL remains open to a constructive dialogue with stakeholders as we seek to move forward with the continued implementation of our sustainability commitments and the achievement of our APRIL2030.

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