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Kimberly-Clark mill scoops sustainability prize28th of March 2014
A Kimberly-Clark Professional paper mill in France has won a sustainability award in recognition of a project that has significantly reduced chemical discharges.The mill, situated in Villey Saint Etienne in the north-east of the country, received first prize in the Eco-Management category of the Enviro Trophy - a competition organised by the French regulatory authorities.
The mill manufactures tissue products from virgin fibre, recycled fibre and ‘broke', which is a raw material created from waste and offcuts. The facility was recognised by judges for the implementation of Project Genesis, an initiative that cut discharges of absorbable organic halogens (AOx) - compounds that result from the re-pulping of broke. Broke contains wet-strength resin, which must be broken down during pulping before the material can be re-used.
Kimberly-Clark Professional subsequently installed a new broke pulper equipped with an additional refiner which breaks down wet-strength resin mechanically and has consequently cut the amount of sodium hypochlorite required by 80 per cent and reduced AOx discharges by 66 per cent.
Tom Berry, head of sustainability, Europe for Kimberly-Clark Professional explained: "Broke is a really important material, as it helps us to reduce waste and maximise the efficiency of our operations. The new process will have a really positive effect on the environment and our surrounding communities."