ALPHARETTA, GA. (December 20, 2007) — Two local business leaders have joined forces to combat the global issue of climate change. Neenah Paper, a premium paper manufacturer that operates a mill in Neenah, Wis., has committed to purchasing over 48 million kWh of Green-e certified renewable energy from the Wisconsin Energy Corporation subsidiary We Energies Energy for Tomorrow program. That is over four times Neenah's initial commitment to purchase renewable energy, which totaled over 10 million kWh in August 2006.
"Neenah Paper's local purchase of certified renewable energy is a strong, direct message to both customers and employees about its commitment to improving the local environment," said Randy Sabel, We Energies principal account manager. "It also makes an impact on air quality for our neighbors, the community and the state in which Neenah Paper operates its largest mills."
We Energies is one of only 14 utility renewable energy programs certified as Green-e in the country. Green-e is the nation's leading independent certification and verification program for renewable energy products.
Local Action, Global Benefit
"Neenah is not only helping to alleviate climate change, but it is also helping We Energies to build more renewable energy resources and grow its program," said John O'Donnell, President of Fine Paper for Neenah Paper, which is also a member of EPA's Green Power Partnership.
The purchase reflects Neenah Paper's commitment to using energy produced near its paper mills and, therefore, to helping enhance the local economy. Energy for Tomorrow uses resources from both Wisconsin and Iowa to produce electricity. By supporting the local renewable energy program, Neenah Paper is directly offsetting the production of electricity from fossil fuels in the area, increasing demand for renewable energy resources and reducing local air emissions.
Neenah Paper is one of more than 650 businesses currently participating in Energy for Tomorrow, a number that is up from 95 in 2003.
Three of Neenah Paper's brands, all manufactured at the Neenah, Wis., mill, are now made entirely with Green-e certified renewable energy. They include CLASSIC CREST Papers; ENVIRONMENT Papers, which is a recycled gradeline; and STARWHITE Papers, which is also North America's first triple-certified gradeline (FSC-Pure Labeled, Carbon Neutral and Green-E Certified). Two finishes of the EAMES Paper Collection (Painting and Furniture finishes) are also made using Green-e certified renewable energy.
Renewable power is an alternative to energy that is derived from fossil fuels, and it comes from a portfolio of sources such as wind, solar, low-impact hydro and biomass. Renewable resources have little to no impact on the environment and produce no net greenhouse gas emissions in generating electricity.
The company uses a mix of different renewable energy technologies — similar to diversifying an investment portfolio — to ensure safe, environmentally responsible and cost effective-electric energy.
Through this and other innovative approaches to sustainability, Neenah Paper has reduced natural gas consumption by 80 percent annually at the Neenah, Wis., mill, and has decreased carbon dioxide emissions by 150,000 metric tons. This is the equivalent of planting 250,000 tree seedlings.
In addition, Neenah Paper has implemented other energy saving upgrades. For example, the company has reengineered its process water treatment system at its Neenah, Wis., mill to operate at significantly reduced noise levels and increased treatment efficiency while at the same time consuming less energy.
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