European Recovered Paper Council



Towards a common goal of sustainability – Launching the European Declaration on Paper Recycling

Ulrich Höke, ERPC chairman, and Soledad Blanco, Director at the European Commission, DG Environment launched the European Declaration on Paper Recycling 2011-2015 at the European Paper Recycling Awards in the European Parliament.

The European Declaration on Paper Recycling sets out measures to optimise the management of paper throughout the value chain from paper and board manufacturing, converting and printing through to the collection, sorting, transportation and recycling of used paper and board products back into the paper loop.

All 12 Signatories and Supporters of this Declaration are willing to ensure that correct systems are in place to encourage paper recycling. They are building on the very positive progress made by the first European Declaration on Paper Recovery 2000 to 2005 and the European Declaration on Paper Recycling 2006 to 2010 (see Together these sectors will continue on a sustainable path in paper recycling, making it possible to reach the new target of a 70% recycling rate by 2015.

Signatories and Supporters of the Declaration accept voluntarily to undertake a number of complementary actions contributing to this target wherever technically possible and economically reasonable. Priority is given to the prevention of waste including its environmental impact during the manufacture of paper and board products, through collection and recycling of paper. Close attention is also being paid to improving the recyclability and - where applicable - the deinkability of paper-based products.

In his introductory statement for the European Declaration on Paper Recycling Janez Potocnik, European Commissioner for the Environment, states: “the Declaration is fully in line with the European objective to build a "circular economy" aiming at using waste as resource. I am therefore happy to support the approach taken by the sector and to wish a long and successful life to this Declaration!”.

ERPC chairman, Ulrich Höke adds: “Paper is already one of the best managed raw materials, boasting high recovery and recycling rates. Even so, the industry commits to continuously improve. We suggest, instead of simply “shrinking consumption”, making paper consumption more sustainable, preserving the valuable contribution of the value chain to green growth and job creation in Europe.”

The Declaration is open to other European associations, whose members are involved directly or indirectly in the paper value chain. Representatives of the EU Institutions will be invited to attend the ERPC gatherings as Observers.

The progress of the Declaration will be reported annually by the European Recovered Paper Council (ERPC).

For more information please contact the ERPC Secretariat, Jori Ringman, +32-2-627 49 19, +32-478-255070 (gsm) or by email to erpc@cepi.orgor visit

Notes to Editor:

Link to the latest Declaration

The European Recovered Paper Council (ERPC) was set up after the successful launch of the first ‘European Declaration on Paper Recovery’ as an industry own-initiative in November 2000 with the aim to monitor the progress made towards meeting the targets set out in the European Declaration. In 2006 and now in 2011 the industry committed itself to meet new voluntary recycling rate targets. The current target is set at 70% in EU 27 plus Switzerland and Norway by 2015, which is higher than in any other region in the world. It also includes qualitative targets in areas such as waste prevention, eco-design, and research and development.

The European Recovered Paper Council has the following tasks:

• to coordinate the commitments of all the Parties to the Declaration

• to take steps to improve the quality of the information available

• to discuss all relevant matters regarding the successful operation of the European Declaration

• to coordinate public information on the achievements of the European Declaration

Members of ERPC are CEPI, CITPA, ERPA, ETS, INGEDE, INTERGRAF, FEPE. Supporters include the EADP, EuPIA, FEICA, FINAT, RADTECH Europe. The European Commission, DG Environment and DG Enterprise, are permanent observers to ERPC.

More information at

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