Good Environmental Choice Australia (GECA) announces the introduction of three new standards for paper and recycled products.

Now accepting products for certification, GECA’s Paper and Stationery Products, Sanitary Paper Products and Recycled Products standards have been updated from previous standards, and offer expanded scope and revised criteria to set new environmental benchmarks for these products. Manufacturers can demonstrate their environmental, health and ethical credentials by having their products certified against these standards.

Paper and Stationery Products

Covering paper and stationery products sold in Australia, the Paper and Stationery Products standard addresses the negative environmental impacts of paper products throughout their lifecycle, from raw material sourcing and manufacturing of pulp and paper to disposal. These impacts can include poor forest management practices, release of toxic substances into the environment from processes such as bleaching, and issues with packaging and end-of-life disposal.

Sanitary Paper Products

Addressing similar criteria to the Paper and Stationery Products standard, the Sanitary Paper Products standard is designed for toilet paper, facial tissues, paper towels, table napkins, general purpose wipes and other paper products used for cleaning or personal hygiene.

Both of GECA’s new paper standards aim to promote sustainable management of forests to minimise ecosystem disturbance; reduction in toxic and polluting emissions to air and water; reduction in energy usage and encouraging energy from renewable sources; reduction of environmental damage or risks related to the use of hazardous chemicals; and improvements in waste management, especially between the raw material stage and the completed paper product.

Recycled Products

A major component in consumer and industrial products, recycled content reduces impact on the environment compared to the use of newly sourced (virgin) materials, with recycled products often having the same strength and performance characteristics of their non-recycled equivalents. GECA’s Recycled Products standard is applicable to products made from at least 50% recycled glass, plastics, rubber, timber, and fill and foundation materials such as sand and gravel.