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Waste is not a word we use often. Wood chips left over from making lumber are used to make pulp and paper. Logs too small for dimensional lumber are processed into engineered wood products, such as our oriented strand board. We also generate a substantial amount of energy from wood residuals (which we call biomass fuels). And we actively seek partners and customers to use our wood residuals, who in turn create other useful products. We don't let much go to waste.

Combined, our efforts add up. In 2015, more than 21 billion pounds of our residuals were reused, recycled or diverted from landfills. This amounts to 97 percent of our waste and residuals being beneficially reused or recycled.

We work to continuously increase our diversion rates, which is why we set an initial goal to reduce the amount of material we send to landfills by 10 percent (for every unit of production) by 2020 compared with a 2010 baseline. We've seen fluctuation in our annual numbers as a result of the relatively small amount of landfill-bound waste we produce, as well as the irregularity of when we send ash to landfills. Ash is produced at facilities burning biomass residuals for energy.

In 2015, we determined that our data-collection capabilities improved significantly since our initial baseline measurement in 2010. We don't have the ability to update our original baseline with historical data, so we've set a new baseline of 2015 with the same goal of reducing waste to landfill by 10 percent by 2020. Given the greater accuracy in measurement, we'll explore whether we should adjust our target to better reflect opportunities for improvement.

We undertook new boiler and kiln projects in 2015 to improve energy efficiency. This resulted in a one-time increase in waste at multiple sites. In addition, multiple sites performed cleanup activities that contributed to an overall increase. We'll continue to pursue our reduction goal by identifying alternative uses for our residuals and waste.

View our residual and waste data