Resolute Forest Products believes it is essential to have meaningful engagement and partnerships with a wide range of stakeholders – customers, suppliers, employees, shareholders, communities, governments and non-governmental organizations. With respect to people, the safety of our employees is paramount.
We aim to contribute to the environmental, social and economic sustainability of the regions where we operate. We regularly engage with stakeholders on a broad spectrum of sustainability issues. Much of this is done in the course of normal business operations through the Company’s various business groups, but more focused stakeholder outreach is also undertaken, including some done to support the development of our 2012 Sustainability Report.
For each sustainability reporting period, Resolute conducts a targeted stakeholder engagement process to better understand our sustainability issues of material importance (referred to as “material issues”) and how stakeholders perceive them. Insights gained from this process helped frame the topics covered in our sustainability report and influenced our sustainability strategy. For the 2011 report, we evaluated the need to update our materiality analysis by surveying over 120 managers and issue experts across the Company, as well as by conducting external stakeholder polling in key operating areas. The feedback received validated the results of the materiality analysis of our 2010 report, confirming we had no significant changes in our material issues.
As part of our materiality analysis, we conducted interviews with representatives of eleven stakeholder groups. This process included interviews with customers, non-governmental/environmental organizations ((E)NGOs), investors, provincial and federal governments, and others. Some key insights garnered from this process:
- All eleven interviewees identified Resolute’s sustainability performance as important, citing risks to reputation as a primary consideration. Each stakeholder recognized that poor sustainability performance on the part of the Company could have an impact on its bottom line.
- Ensuring sustainability is important because end-consumers increasingly demand environmentally sound products like certified paper and building materials, and ‘eco-friendly’ packaging solutions. Consumer-facing companies able to meet this demand will be viewed favorably and preferred by an increasing number of consumers. As a supplier to consumer-facing companies, Resolute has a critical role to play in ensuring a green supply chain.
- In general, respondents see the forest products sector’s performance on environmental and social issues as positive. Yet, while they recognize companies in this industry sector operate within a complex business framework that is characterized by significant government involvement and structural economic shifts, it was felt that historically these companies used these challenges to avoid making strong sustainability commitments. Stakeholders agree that companies in this sector play a key role in sustainable development but believe that effort beyond minimum expectations is required.
Public Participation in Forest Management Planning
Resolute's commitment to produce quality products that meet the criteria of today's environmentally conscious stakeholders begins with responsible fiber sourcing.
As required by provincial laws and regulations, Resolute prepares 20- or 25-year forest management plans that are revised every five years. Public participation is a critical part of the process, and we encourage local community groups, individuals and First Nations communities to participate in the planning process.
To learn more, visit Forestry and Fiber Sourcing.
Milestone Agreement to Protect the Boreal Forest
Resolute is proud to be a signatory of the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement. This milestone pact between 21 members of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC) and leading environmental organizations will promote application of the highest standards of forest management to an area of boreal forest twice the size of Germany.
For more information on the Canadian Boreal Forest Agreement, visit www.canadianborealforestagreement.com.
United Effort to Protect Cumberland Plateau
In June 2005, a historic memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed with the Dogwood Alliance and the Natural Resources Defense Council to enhance the protection of forests on Tennessee's Cumberland Plateau as well as in other parts of the southern United States.
Highlights of the MOU include: commitments to promote the management of natural forests; the study of certain lands of exceptional ecological, geological or historical significance on the Cumberland Plateau; and commitments to identify and promote recycling opportunities. All three parties continue to engage in regular dialogue regarding the MOU commitments and their implementation.
Partnering with First Nations
Resolute Forest Products recognizes and respects the cultural and social significance of the land, water and forests of Canada to its Aboriginal peoples. We also understand these resources are critical to the future prosperity and economic sustainability of Aboriginal communities. We share a common interest in ensuring that the forests we rely upon continue to provide for cultural, environmental and economic needs of future generations.
Resolute is committed to support and maintain constructive relationships with Aboriginal peoples in our operating regions in Canada and to explore employment and business development opportunities of mutual benefit. To learn more, read our Aboriginal Peoples Policy.