We continuously reduce our energy use and emissions through energy reduction projects, equipment upgrades, process improvements and fuel switching.
Our strategy for lowering both air and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions is connected to continuous improvements in our operations and our management of purchased energy. We reduce these emissions by implementing efficient manufacturing technologies, investing in energy efficiency improvements, fuel switching and operating our mills with renewable biomass residuals and less fossil fuel. Using less fossil fuel both reduces our operating costs and decreases our GHG emissions.
GHG Emissions Reductions
Our goal of reducing GHG emissions by 20 percent by the end of 2020 includes both Scope 1 and Scope 2 emissions. Scope 1 emissions result from burning fossil fuels while Scope 2 emissions result from the offsite utility generation of steam and electricity we purchase. Our Scope 1 emissions also include relatively modest and stable emissions from International Paper owned and operated landfills.
Through continuous improvements in operations, equipment, energy efficiency and fuel diversity, we achieved significant company-wide reductions in Scope 1 and Scope 2 GHG emissions. We achieved a 21 percent reduction in 2018, exceeding our Vision 2020 goal, and will continue to evaluate and implement improvement projects.
Vision 2020 Goal
Stated Goal: Reduce GHG emissions by 20% (direct and indirect)
NOX, SO2 and Other Air Emissions Reductions
Energy efficiency projects, fuel switching and increased regulatory requirements resulted in significant reductions of overall emissions from our operations. We exceeded our original Vision 2020 goal of a 10 percent reduction in air emissions, and in 2016 restated our goal to 30 percent.
We have reduced sulfur dioxide (SO2) by 62 percent, nitrous oxides (NOX) by 36 percent and particulate matter (PM) by 19 percent for an overall reduction of 46 percent from our 2010 baseline. For the past five years, energy efficiency projects, regulatory requirements and fuel-switching — particularly away from coal and oil — resulted in significant reductions of other air emissions.
Restated in 2016
Vision 2020 Goal
Stated Goal: Reduce air emissions (PM, SO2, NOX) by 30%