Fibria began 2014 by celebrating great achievements. The company was recognized in the 2014 Sustainability Yearbook released by RobecoSAM, which is responsible for the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI). The company received the prestigious Gold Class Sustainability Award for its leadership in the forestry and paper segment in the DJSI World.
In addition to the recognition the company received for its commitment to the efficient use of natural resources, research and development and our social engagement initiatives, the award also poses the question that we must ask ourselves: “What made an international organization choose Fibria as the leader in its industry in the DJSI?”
The response lies within the efforts that Fibria has made and implemented when it relates to our social and environmental approach. Sustainability is in our mission and intrinsically linked to our business as it is based on renewable forests.
As a pulp manufacturer, certified by the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) and by CERFLOR / PEFC, Fibria strengthened its commitment in 2012 to sustainability by introducing a set of long-term targets that signal the company’s path until 2025. Defining these targets took into account the priority themes featured in the Material Matrix and socio-environmental risks identified by the Enterprise Risk Management (ERM). The result was a set of 90 variables that directly or indirectly affect the forest management, production and the commercialization of pulp. These variables were grouped into six key themes to guide the company’s performance: market and shareholder return; eco-efficiency; forest management; stakeholder relationships; social acceptance and legitimacy; human resources and organizational culture.
These targets were defined through a systems thinking approach, permeating more than one area of the company.
Given that we are a forest-based company, two of these targets were linked directly to the management and use of land. The first step was to optimize the use of natural resources, beginning with the reduction of one-third of the land needed for pulp production. As a result, Fibria invested in the development of technology that is tied to forestry and natural resources management that increased efficiency of wood production. The company has achieved the best clones for the environmental conditions for each of Fibria’s Forestry Units, with trees that result in producing a greater quantity of pulp per planted forest area.
Forest management has the challenge of protecting biodiversity, promoting environmental restoration of 40,000 hectares in the Atlantic Rainforest and Cerrado (tropical savanna eco-region) by 2025. As of last year, the company had already reached 20% of the target with the restoration of over seven thousand hectares.
Cultivating eucalyptus in barren lands, the company developed a strategy of cultivating plots of eucalyptus forests, but alternating them with native trees. As a result, 35% of those areas are now preserved for native reserves, and this combination fosters the ideal environment to preserve biodiversity. This has been extremely successful as the company has identified and maintains a biodiversity database that already accounts for 652 species of birds, 122 species of mammals, and 1943 species of plant on this once barren land that is part of Fibria.
Additional targets the company established were the reduction of waste and helping to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions, by doubling the uptake of carbon in the atmosphere. In terms of the carbon footprint, the inventory released in 2012 indicates that the company absorbs 0.8 tons of carbon per each ton of carbon it emits to produce pulp.
It is clear that Fibria is working to meet its target by 2025 of increasing eco-efficiency and reducing the amount of industrial solid waste that goes to landfills by 91%. Last year, the company celebrated a 60% reduction of industrial solid waste.
Finally, two of the most innovative targets are aimed at strengthening the interaction between Fibria and the society. The development of this plan made a difference when we were able to use a methodology to evaluate the favorability of communities. The targets were to achieve an 80% approval rating among neighboring communities, and help them make 70% of the income-generating projects, supported by the company, self-sustaining. In 2012, 5% of said projects were self-sustained.
Accordingly, the company has projects in which it operates, with diverse communities, including Indians, Quilombolas (descendants of escaped slaves) and fishermen that involved over 5,000 families. The project includes the expansion of the Program for Rural and Territorial Development (PDRT) model, promotion of technical and managerial training through consultants and partnerships attracting support from other partners, providing leadership of the community in its development process, increasing managerial skills and technical community members and empowering the community’s autonomy from the public and private sector.
Both initiatives have contributed to the development of communities and created a climate of trust with favorability reaching 72.5% last year. Fortunately, the company’s achievements have attracted the attention of investors and analysts worldwide, as well as other stakeholders. It has also reflected improvements in the socio-environmental issues that have contributed to maintain our positioning as global leader in eucalyptus pulp, creating growth opportunities and reducing risks. This also helps ensure our market share while motivating our 17,000 direct and indirect workers making Fibria a company that admires the value of life.