Increased Use of Recycled Pulp

Use of recycled fibers can significantly reduce energy consumption in pulp production. However, as compared to chemical pulping, this can be at the expense of increased CO2 emissions, when fossil fuels are used for recovered pulp (IEA, 2009. 138)). There is significant potential to increase recycling rates, particularly in non-OECD countries where the rates are between 10 to 50%. Whereas the theoretical limit for waste paper recovery is estimated at 80%, the limit is believed to be closer to 60% in practice (IEA, 2012. p. 35)

Recycled pulp produces sludge that can present a disposal problem. Additionally there are limitations to the amount of recycled fiber that can be used for a given product (Kramer et al. 2009. p. 97).

Development Status Products

Increased Use of Recycled PulpCosts & Benefits

Parent Process: Recovered Fiber Pulping
Energy Savings Potential

Use of recovered pulp can reduce energy consumption by 10 to 13 GJ/t-pulp (IEA, 2012. p.35))
US flag The production of one ton of recycled pulp is estimated, on average, to consume 6.3 to 11.6 GJ less energy compared to chemical pulp and 6.3 to 10.6 GJ/t less as compared to mechanical pulp. (Kramer et al., 2009. p. 27)

CO2 Emission Reduction Potential

US flag Studies estimate the construction costs of recycled pulp processing capacity at around $485/ton of pulp. Depending on the price of waste paper versus virgin pulp this may result in up to $73.9 per ton of pulp in operations and maintenance cost savings (Kramer et al.2009. p. 97).

Increased Use of Recycled Pulp Publications

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27, 97

Tracking Clean Energy Progress

Published by the International Energy Agency, this Energy Technology Perspectives 2012 is the most ambitious and comprehensive publication on new energy technology developments. It demonstrates how technologies – from electric vehicles to wind farms – can make a decisive difference in achieving the internationally agreed objective of limiting global temperature rise to 2°C above pre-industrial levels. It also provides guidance for decision makers on how to reshape current energy trends to build a clean, secure and competitive energy future.

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