In Olympia, Washington, representatives of the American Forest & Paper Association, the American Wood Council and the Northwest Pulp & Paper Association are meeting with state lawmakers to discuss legislative proposals that would affect the almost 30,000 workers they represent.
Industry representatives will share with lawmakers details of the industry’s positive economic impact on Washington and its commitment to sustainable manufacturing leadership under AF&PA’s Better Practices, Better Planet 2020 initiative. They will also discuss how proposed carbon cap-and-trade legislation should account for industry leadership on reducing emissions.
“Paper and paper-based packaging facilities in Washington are leaders on sustainable manufacturing practices and make products essential for everyday life from renewable and recyclable resources,” said Donna Harman, President and CEO of AF&PA. “Greenhouse gas legislation as proposed fails to recognize the industry’s sustainability leadership and we hope there will be changes to enable our industry to continue generating good jobs and economic growth for the state.”
One hundred and eighty-one pulp, paper, paper packaging and wood products facilities operate in Washington. These facilities employ almost 30,000 Washingtonians with an annual payroll of nearly $2 billion. Estimated state and local taxes paid by the industry total $203 million annually.
“The wood products industry in Washington directly provides thousands of family-wage jobs, most of which are located in and strengthen rural communities. Further, our products help mitigate carbon dioxide, a principal greenhouse gas, and improve the health of the state’s forests,” said American Wood Council President & CEO Robert Glowinski. “We look forward to continuing to work with the state legislature to recognize the good work already being done to benefit the environment for future generations, as well as to maximize our industry’s contributions to the state.”
“We share the goal of continuing to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in Washington state, recognizing our moral obligation to help protect our state’s beautiful environment,” said Chris McCabe, Executive Director of the Northwest Pulp & Paper Association. “However, there is a better way to achieve this goal than an expensive, complex new law and we look forward to discussing how to best achieve our shared goal with lawmakers.”