ABH (NYSE, TSX)
Commitment to Improving Sustainability Continues
MONTREAL, Sept. 4 /CNW Telbec/ - David J. Paterson, President and Chief
Executive Officer, expressed his disappointment at today's decision by
Greenpeace Canada to pull out of formal discussions towards building a
collaborative process with AbitibiBowater on forest management practices in
Discussions with Greenpeace broke off over an impasse regarding specific
harvesting areas in which Greenpeace demanded that AbitibiBowater cease its
forestry operations. The areas identified by Greenpeace are publicly owned and
regulated woodlands and AbitibiBowater cannot change where and how it harvests
in them without first obtaining the support and approval of other public,
private and community-based stakeholders.
"AbitibiBowater is working hard to live up to our environmental promise
to do more and to continually do better," said Mr. Paterson. "To date, we have
achieved independent sustainable forestry certification for 95% of our managed
woodlands - approximately 46 million acres - more than any other company in
The Company's 100% certification commitment builds on its inclusive
approach to certification that recognizes all three predominant North American
certification standards, including the CSA, FSC and SFI standards.
"While Greenpeace's decision to end talks is unfortunate,
AbitibiBowater's work continues," added Mr. Paterson. "My door remains open to
solutions. And, I reiterate my invitation to Greenpeace for a joint effort to
meet concerned stakeholders to see how we can find ways to adjust regulations
and forestry practices. I also hope that Greenpeace will accept my other
invitation to tour our operations and to see for itself how our practices are
Significant progress had already been made in limiting the impact of
forestry activities on the boreal forest. AbitibiBowater has already postponed
harvesting in large areas of forest for numerous environmental and social
reasons, including the protection of wildlife habitat, such as migratory
tracks for woodland caribou as well as ensuring traditional aboriginal uses.
In June, the Company made a significant move to encourage the resolution of
the Government of Ontario's dispute with the Grassy Narrows First Nation by
deciding to no longer use fiber harvested in the Whiskey Jack Forest.
Accepting Greenpeace's demand would have forced the Company to shut down
several operations in Québec and Ontario, putting many of its employees out of
work and jeopardizing the supply of products to customers.
AbitibiBowater produces a wide range of newsprint, commercial printing
papers, market pulp and wood products. It is the eighth largest publicly
traded pulp and paper manufacturer in the world. AbitibiBowater owns or
operates 27 pulp and paper facilities and 34 wood products facilities located
in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom and South Korea. Marketing
its products in more than 90 countries, the Company is also among the world's
largest recyclers of old newspapers and magazines, and has more third-party
certified sustainable forest land than any other company in the world.
AbitibiBowater's shares trade under the stock symbol ABH on both the New York
Stock Exchange and the Toronto Stock Exchange.
For further information:
For further information: Media and Others: Seth Kursman, Vice President,
Communications and Government Affairs, (514) 394-2398,