Paper Profiles

Ecopaque: Making It Green


What if you had a paper grade that had all of these environmental attributes?

ecopaque- Uses 50 percent less wood fiber than traditional offset or laser bond
– Qualifies for either FSC, SFI or PEFC chain-of-custody labeling
– Is produced at a low carbon emission mill
– Is manufactured carbon neutral

Sound too incredible to be true? For Ecopaque Offset and Ecopaque Laser, two high brightness grades from AbitibiBowater, it is true. So if you need to decrease your environmental footprint, without sacrificing the quality of your project, the Ecopaque grade is your answer.

Less Wood Fiber Means Fewer Trees Used
The 90-brightness Ecopaque Offset is the highest brightness offset paper made with thermo-mechanical pulp (TMP). Its laser-capable sister grade, Ecopaque Laser is the world’s only laser paper made with thermo-mechanical pulp.

A distinct environmental benefit is that the TMP pulping process uses 50 percent less wood fiber than the kraft fiber process used to make traditional offset or traditional laser bond. Besides the fiber savings, an optical benefit of using mechanical fiber-based paper is the higher opacity than the competitive sheet at the same basis weight. Higher opacity translates to a higher quality look with little show-through.

Printers are substituting a 45 lb. Ecopaque sheet for a 50 lb. traditional offset. Or in the case of laser bond, printers are substituting a 19.7 lb. Ecopaque Laser for a 24 lb. traditional bond. Why? The mechanical fiber in these Ecopaque grades gives the paper more bulk and a higher caliper, thus making a lower basis weight feel more substantial. Even less wood fiber is needed for the lower basis weight. Save more green in your wallet, as less paper by weight is needed for your print job.

Not only is less fiber needed, but the fiber itself comes from sawmill residue, a by-product of lumber production. Trees are harvested to make durable wood products, and then the leftovers are used to make paper pulp. Nothing goes to waste!

Fiber used in this product comes in part from forests certified to the CSA and FSC sustainable forest management standards. Ecopaque qualifies for FSC, SFI or PEFC chain-of-custody certification, providing assurances that the fiber comes from sustainably managed forests and is legally sourced.

In fact, 100 percent of the forests under AbitibiBowater’s management are certified to credible and globally recognized sustainable forestry management standards that are independently audited: Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), Canadian Standards Association (CSA) or Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI).

Hydroelectricity is Clean Energy
AbitibiBowater’s Alma mill in Quebec, which manufactures Ecopaque, has low greenhouse gas emissions, primarily for two reasons. First, clean hydroelectricity is used for 98 percent of the electricity at the mill. Secondly, 25 percent of the boiler fuel used at Alma is carbon neutral biomass – that is, bark and sawdust. In addition, energy efficiency efforts at the mill have reduced even further the mill’s carbon emissions.

Ecopaque and Ecopaque Laser are Manufactured Carbon Neutral

The direct and indirect greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions associated with the production of Ecopaque and Ecopaque Laser are completely offset using AbitibiBowater’s own earned carbon credits.

AbitibiBowater has earned these carbon credits by reducing GHG emissions through improved energy efficiency and decreased fossil fuel usage. These carbon credits belong to AbitibiBowater and are registered on the Chicago Climate Exchange (CCX), the world’s first and North America’s only legally binding greenhouse gas emission reduction program.

Continually Reducing Greenhouse Gas Emissions
In fact, it is AbitibiBowater’s aspiration to become a carbon-neutral enterprise. Since 2000, AbitibiBowater has significantly reduced its corporate-wide GHG emissions by 71 percent in absolute terms – equal in effect to removing 734,000 automobiles from the road – and has reduced its emissions per ton by 43 percent over that same time period.

So why not go greener? Reducing the environmental impact of your paper is as easy as switching to Ecopaque or Ecopaque Laser.

To order a sample packet of Ecopaque Offset, please e-mail

To order a sample packet of Ecopaque Laser, please e-mail


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