Search alternatives to increase carbon sequestration, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and contribute to the solution for the climate crisis, in addition to reducing and mitigating risks of this nature.
2. Climate Change and Suzano
Given that the pulp and paper sector depends on forest management, the use of water resources, land use, and industrial activities, climate change poses significant challenges and opportunities for the industry.
Suzano has a significant forest base, with a total area of approximately 2.3 million hectares, which include eucalyptus forests and one of the largest private protected native forest areas in Brazil (with approximately 960,000 hectares in 2020). Together, native and eucalyptus forests contribute directly to removing and storing carbon dioxide (CO₂), preserving biodiversity, and regulating the hydrological cycle, among other benefits. The company also has a business model focused on eco-efficient operations and on the replacement of fossil-based products, characterized by high intensity in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. This imposes great responsibility on its role in climate change mitigation and adaptation, contributing with governments, civil society, and other players in the private sector to meet this challenge.
For this reason, Suzano recognizes the importance and need to be a leading and transforming agent in the combined development of innovative and sustainable solutions that can contribute to solving the challenges of society. Thus, using a systemic and collaborative approach, connecting the local and global agenda and considering the main frameworks, challenges and scientific advancement, the company remains committed, based on a robust management model to address the topic of Climate Change.
Suzano will continue to incorporate climate change into its business model, driving the strategic vision of the business toward the transition to a low-carbon economy:
- We are committed to creating a business model that is resilient (working with adaptation) that is a catalyst for opportunity.
- Incorporating carbon as a relevant aspect in operations, managing and monitoring risks and opportunities, and including the development of less emitting processes.
In this way, we create and share value by offering solutions, thereby contributing to solving the challenges faced by society.
In our journey, this is made evident by good practices and results, such as: carbon sequestration by forests, forest management and protection; meteorological measurements and climate analysis for forest production; management of GHG emissions and removal; identification of climate risk as one of the priority risks to be managed; generation of renewable energy; energy and water efficiency measures in the mills and supply chain operations; and research to adapt to climate change.
In 2019, Suzano voluntarily made a series of long-term commitments, and of these, special emphasis was placed on the topic of climate change. The commitments listed were:
- Remove 40 million tons of CO2 equivalent from 2020 to 2030
- Reduce the intensity of carbon emissions (Scope 1 and Scope 2) by ton of product produced (tCO2eq/t) by 15% by 2030.
By setting these goals, the company is committed to achieving more than just being carbon neutral and reducing the intensity of its greenhouse gas emissions. This means that Suzano commits to removing more greenhouse gases (GHG) from the atmosphere than it emits, in other words, the company will work for significant additional removal.
Suzano’s GHG emissions intensity indicators by tonne of product produced are currently among the lowest in the industry. Nevertheless, the company proceeds with projects and periodic initiatives aimed at reducing these rates. To see the results of these indicators, go to “Intensity of greenhouse gas emissions (Scopes 1, 2, and 3), by tonne of product,” and “Intensity of greenhouse gas emissions (Scopes 1, 2, and 3), by net revenue.”
In order keep abreast of good international practices and positively influence the progress of the private sector in climate change, Suzano is involved in voluntary initiatives focused on this topic. These include:
- Brazilian coalition on climate, forests and agriculture: an initiative that operates in a multi-sector and multidisciplinary manner, and is open to new members and contributions. The coalition seeks convergence between the participants and uses divergence as a way to move forward and build solutions. Suzano’s CEO serves as a member of the Strategic Group (SG) and Executive Group (EG), and Suzano’s employees serve on various WGs and monitor the coalition’s agendas.
- Brazilian Business Council for Sustainable Development (CEBDS): is the representative in Brazil of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD), which includes approximately 60 of the largest business groups in the country, with revenues equivalent to about 45% of GDP. CEBDS reinforces the sustainable development agenda in the companies that operate in Brazil by working together with governments and civil society, in addition to disseminating the most current concepts and practices on this topic. Suzano is a member of the Thematic Chamber (TC) for Biodiversity and Technology, TC for Energy and Climate Change, and Social TC, with joint development of projects and content, and made an additional contribution in 2020.
- Brazilian Global Compact Network: International mobilization of companies in support of the United Nations (UN) in the promotion of ten principles that bring together fundamental values in the areas of environment, human and labor rights, and the fight against corruption. The Global Compact is a voluntary contribution by business to the pursuit of a more sustainable and inclusive global economy, and engagement in advancing the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Suzano is a member of the Technical Group for Energy and Climate and of the Board of Directors of the Brazilian Network of the Global Compact.
- Indústria Brasileira de Árvores (Ibá): an association responsible for institutionally representing the production chain of planted trees before its main stakeholders and to advocate for the sector’s interests in order to add value to the products obtained from pine, eucalyptus, and other species planted for industrial purposes. It also works with institutional organizations, dialogue platforms, governments, and NGOs, providing technical and political basis for discussions about GHG inventory, carbon pricing, regulations, among other issues, in order to avoid risks and increase opportunities to boost the low-carbon economy in Brazil and worldwide. Some of the association’s positions include the implementation of the MRV process and ETS Market in Brazil, and the work on forest carbon removal to be considered in the Paris Agreement – Art. 6.
- GHG Protocol Program and the Emissions Trading System (SCE), with Fundação Getúlio Vargas: Suzano has been a member of these initiatives since they were created, and participates in the Advisory Committee of the GHG Protocol working group that is studying a new methodology for calculating carbon removal and initiatives in the land use sectors. The company is also a member of the working group of the Taskforce for Scaling Voluntary Carbon Markets, a forum that works to identify the main challenges and impediments on the topic and provide a consensus on the best way to enhance the voluntary carbon market, thus presenting a project focused on viable solutions.
Suzano also joined the Climate Action 100+ initiative, led by investors to ensure that the largest corporate emitters of greenhouse gases take the necessary action on climate change, and incorporated the Assessing low-Carbon Transition (ACT) initiative for the pulp and paper sector.
To improve its practices, the company relies on scientific evidence and voluntary market standards that support private sector engagement, considering the challenges and transformative potential of the business. For this reason, the company uses the studies conducted by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the GHG Protocol guidelines on measuring and reporting GHG emissions and removal as a reference to manage climate change.
Every year, Suzano surveys and analyzes carbon emissions and removal from its operations. Using internally established procedures, recognized methodologies, and independent third-party verification, Suzano’s inventory is published annually and serves as the basis for a series of internal exercises and analyses (in efficiency and mitigation projects and programs), for monitoring, tracking, and defining strategies to reduce emissions and, for management of the Long-Term Goals.
Suzano also has numerous initiatives aimed at efficiency, expansion of renewable energy exports, and reduction in the use of fossil fuels. These initiatives and programs occur throughout the operation and are developed and carried out in partnership with suppliers. Working groups, integrative projects, and general initiatives are in place not only in industrial, forestry, and logistics operations, but also in operational and strategic development areas, such as Technology, Research and Development, and New Business, which work to study and apply adaptation and resilience measures. All of this is done through genetic studies, data analysis methodologies related to climate scenarios and monitoring, soil and water data for adaptations of and recommendations for operations, and studies and development of new products (that will serve as an alternative to fossil-based products).
The Sustainability area supports this structure as a guardian of the Strategy and Governance for the topic and by providing technical knowledge on Climate Change, calculations of emissions and removal for the entire company and for projects, analysis of risks and opportunities, among others.
Risk management, tracking of trends, and monitoring and analysis linked to potential agreements and regulations are also part of this Suzano strategy. This front, in particular, relies on the participation of the areas of Risks; Corporate Relations; Finance; Technology, Research and Development; and New Businesses, and is supported by partnerships and relationships with relevant stakeholders, such as communities, academia, investors, sector associations, NGOs, and CSOs (Civil Society Organizations).
Together with all these fronts and actions, Suzano conducts training and awareness actions on the topic, contributing with trends, results, data analysis and reflections related to risks and opportunities, not only in meetings held for this purpose, but also through participation in forums, workshops, and WG meetings held by different areas. These participations are also an opportunity for maintaining our relationship with relevant stakeholders and to analyze aspects arising from the company’s reputation and sustainability surveys.
Suzano has a public position on zero deforestation and does not perform any type of native forest suppression for its production. We only expand cultivation in areas that have already suffered human interference. In this sense, in addition to acting in line with the Forest Code and other Brazilian legislation on the subject, the company has publicly committed to adhere to the Principles and Criteria of the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®)¹ and the Brazilian Forest Certification Programme (Cerflor), which ensures the company’s good conduct in developing forest products in areas under the scope of certification, respecting the environmental, social, and economic aspects of the region.
The company also has an environmental restoration program in order to restore areas of native forests, including areas around river springs. In line with its commitment to fight the climate crisis, in addition to the two long-term goals directly related to this topic, five other goals are indirectly connected:
- Replacement of plastics and petroleum products: offer 10 million tons of products from renewable sources
- Water (Forestry): increase water availability in 100% of critical watersheds
- Water (Industrial): reduce water withdrawal by 15%
- Industrial waste: reduce the waste sent to landfill by 70%, transforming it into by-products
- Energy: increase renewable energy exports by 50%.
In addition, Suzano is an official supporter of the Task Force on Climate-related Financial Disclosures (TCFD) and publicly and openly states its position that a carbon price and market model needs to be established, and that there should be significant progress in the negotiations related to the Paris Agreement.
More information on Suzano’s strategy, governance and performance on the topic of Climate Change can be found on this page and on the page referring to the TCFD of this Indicators Center.