UN Sustainable Development Goals

Resolute Forest Products shares the United Nations’ (UN) vision for a more inclusive, peaceful and prosperous future. In 2021, we committed to integrating the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) into our sustainability reporting strategy. Our commitment to the SDGs helps us fulfill our aspiration to be a more efficient and competitive company, a better employer, a stronger business partner, and even more deeply engaged in the communities in which we live and work.

Illustration of UN sustainable development goals

The SDGs are a call for action to promote prosperity while protecting the planet. They recognize that ending poverty goes hand-in-hand with strategies that build economic growth and address a range of social needs including education, health, social protection, and job opportunities, while tackling climate change and environmental protection. We have identified eight SDGs that align with our sustainability commitments:

  • Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation
  • Goal 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
  • Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
  • Goal 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
  • Goal 12: Responsible Consumption and Production
  • Goal 13: Climate Action 
  • Goal 15: Life on Land
  • Goal 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Resolute is focused on leveraging our sustainability strategy to support the achievement of these goals. The following table outlines how we are aligning our shared priorities – as well as our sustainability performance, prepared in accordance with the GRI Standards – with the relevant SDG targets. We have made ambitious public commitments for each of our shared priorities to help achieve these targets, and we will monitor our progress regularly, updating our performance in conjunction with our annual sustainability reporting.

Water Management
303-1: Interactions with water as a shared resource

303-5: Water consumed
6.4 By 2030, substantially increase water-use efficiency across all sectors and ensure sustainable withdrawals and supply of freshwater to address water scarcity and substantially reduce the number of people suffering from water scarcity. Resolute is committed to managing water efficiently by establishing annual water reduction targets for each of our pulp, paper and tissue mills.

In 2021, we returned 94% of the water we withdrew to the environment. Water consumption is regularly evaluated at our network of facilities, and company-wide water consumption is disclosed on our corporate website.

We sustained a "B” (Management level) score from CDP Water Security, reflecting the actions we have taken to evaluate and manage our potential environmental risks relating to our use of water.

For more information: visit Water Management.  
302-1: Energy consumption within the organization 7.2 By 2030, increase substantially the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix.

7.3 By 2030, double global rate of improvement in energy efficiency.
Optimizing the use of renewable energy sources such as hydroelectricity and carbon-neutral biomass, while reducing consumption of fossil fuels, is a key element of our strategy to improve our carbon footprint. In 2021, Resolute generated over three quarters of our total energy needs (78%) from renewable sources, such as hydroelectricity and biomass.

In 2021, we produced 45% of our electricity needs internally (owned and self-generated), mostly from renewable sources (hydroelectricity and biomass), and we derived 75% of fuel energy from biomass (bark, wood residues, biosolids). The company-wide focus is on improving energy efficiency and switching from fossil fuels to renewable energy sources.

Resolute’s two Florida tissue mills – Sanford and Hialeah – joined SolarTogether™ in 2021, a community program offered by Florida Power & Lighting (FPL) that helps local homes and businesses access emissions-free energy. In 2022, we anticipate a total annual reduction in greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of about 7,000 metric tons (7,716 short tons) of CO2 equivalents.

For more information, visit Green Energy.
Economic Performance and Infrastructure Investments
201-1: Direct economic value generated and distributed

203-2: Significant indirect economic impacts
8.2: Achieve higher levels of economic productivity through diversification, technological upgrading and innovation, including through a focus on high-value added and labour-intensive sectors.

8.3: Promote development-oriented policies that support productive activities, decent job creation, entrepreneurship, creativity and innovation, and encourage formalization and growth of micro-, small-, and medium-sized enterprises, including through access to financial services.

9.4: By 2030, upgrade infrastructure and retrofit industries to make them sustainable, with increased resource-use efficiency and greater adoption of clean and environmentally sound technologies and industrial processes, with all countries taking action in accordance with their respective capabilities.
At Resolute, our business and sustainability strategies have been expressly developed to align our efforts in environmental stewardship and social responsibility with our business objectives. This approach reinforces our vision that profitability and sustainability drive our future.

In 2021, Resolute generated direct economic value of US$2.8 billion; approximately $1.7 billion for our Canadian operations, and $1.1 billion for our U.S. operations. For more information, visit Key Performance Indicators.

In 2021, the indirect economic impact of Resolute's operations supported more than 23,000 jobs; over 5,000 companies signed up for our Regional Supplier Registry web portal; and in 2020, we announced a C$27 million project to establish a commercial plant specializing in the production of cellulose filaments, a sustainable biomaterial derived from wood fiber, at our Kénogami (Quebec) paper mill. We also announced an C$11 million investment to enhance the facility’s short-term competitiveness by modernizing equipment in order to produce high-grade SCA+ supercalendered paper.
Talent Management & Local Hiring
401-1: New employee hires and employee turnover 8.5 By 2030, achieve full and productive employment and decent work for all women and men, including for young people and persons with disabilities, and equal pay for work of equal value. Resolute’s long-term competitiveness is tied to the ability to recruit, develop and retain top-quality employees with the right skills. Our focus is on implementing new leadership and human resources practices to create an inclusive workplace.

We hired 1,490 new permanent and temporary employees, raising our employer profile through targeted recruitment practices. We also hired 187 student and seasonal workers, and recorded 210 internal promotions. We recorded a 18.6% turnover rate, including a 4.7% voluntary turnover rate.

We have in place a Diversity Policy designed to ensure equal consideration and opportunities to all employees. In 2021, while we were a public company, we also adopted a board of directors-level diversity policy requiring a minimum of 25% representation of each gender (ie. male and female), as well as an executive leadership level diversity policy acknowledging diversity as a key factor in the company’s talent management strategy. In addition, we trained 100% employees on workplace respect and civility.

For more information, visit Human Resources.
Employee Health, Safety & Wellness
102-41: Collective bargaining agreements

403-1: Occupational health and safety management system

403-2: Hazard identification, risk assessment, and incident investigation

403-6: Promotion of worker health
8.8 Protect labor rights and promote safe and secure working environments for all workers, including migrant workers, in particular women migrants, and those in precarious employment. Resolute is committed to the collective bargaining process and believes protecting our employees’ right to freedom of association is fundamental to our way of doing business. In 2021, we renewed seven collective agreements covering 540 employees in Canada. We are also committed to renewing 20 collective agreements covering 1,160 employees at pulp and paper operations and 860 employees at wood products facilities in 2022.

At Resolute, safety is a core value, linked to every part of our business. Our ultimate goal is zero workplace incidents, zero injuries, as outlined in our Health and Safety Policy Statement. In 2021, we achieved Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) incident rate of 0.47, including U.S. sawmills acquired in 2021; achieved a severity rate of 21.6; and 98% of hourly employees submitted at least 2 proactive near-miss reports.

Twenty-seven operations – more than half of our facilities – completed 2021 without a single, recordable injury, including our Menominee (Michigan) recycled pulp mill, whose employees achieved 1.75 million consecutive hours without incident, an achievement that extends over nine years.

For more information, visit Health and Safety.
Waste Management
301-1: Materials used by weight or volume

301-2: Recycled input materials used

306-1: Waste generation and significant waste-related impacts

304-6: Waste diverted from disposal
12.2 By 2030, achieve sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources.

12.5: By 2030, substantially reduce waste generation through prevention, reduction, recycling and re-use.
Resolute is focused on reducing the waste generated by our operations. Our approach to waste management includes identifying beneficial-use alternatives, such as land spreading, in order to reduce the amount of waste sent to landfills. We also pursue process efficiencies, such as optimizing fiber use, to minimize the cost of effluent treatment.

In 2021, Resolute maintained chain of custody (CoC) certifications to internationally recognized standards at 100% of the company’s certified facilities, and in early 2022 we completed CoC certification at our U.S. sawmills. We also maintained ISO 14001 environmental management system certification at 100% of certified operations, and are expecting to complete certification at our U.S. sawmills in 2022, and at our Hagerstown (Maryland) tissue converting facility in 2023. 

In 2021, Resolute used over 200,000 metric tons of recovered paper, and redirected 71% of pulp, paper and tissue mill residues toward beneficial uses.

We establish annual fiber loss targets for each of our pulp, paper and tissue mills, and in 2021, we achieved our company-wide target of recording fiber losses of no more than 39 kg per metric ton of production.

For more information, visit Environmental Performance.
Responsible Procurement: Labor & Social Criteria
102-16: Values, principles, standards, and norms of behavior

414-1: New suppliers screened using social criteria

414-2: Negative social impacts in the supply chain and actions taken
12.2 By 2030, achieve sustainable management and efficient use of natural resources.

12.7 Promote public procurement practices that are sustainable, in accordance with national policies and priorities.
Resolute’s Wood and Fiber Sourcing Policy commits the company to compliance with all laws and regulations in all operations. Employees are expected to maintain the highest level of ethics and integrity in their dealings with customers, suppliers, fellow employees, shareholders and other stakeholders; the foundations of these expectations are defined in our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics Reporting Policy.

Resolute is committed to developing a sustainable and responsible regional procurement initiative that will positively contribute to a resilient supply chain and to promote the economic and social development of the communities in which we operate. Our Regional Procurement Policy Guidelines, intended to work alongside our Indigenous Procurement Policy Guidelines, complement our procurement policies and procedures.

Resolute also provides equitable access to commercial opportunities and promotes economic participation of Indigenous peoples and businesses in forest products sector. The company has ongoing consultative relationships and business partnerships with close to 40 Indigenous communities and organizations.
Customer Satisfaction
A material topic not covered by the GRI standards 12.8 By 2030, ensure that people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony and nature. Resolute focuses on customer satisfaction by measuring quality and service key performance indicators (KPI) and monitoring our established monitoring processes. Tissue joined our customer satisfaction tracking initiative in August 2020, and we continued to track KPIs on a monthly basis, as in previous years.

In 2021, we reviewed and closed 95% of the Root Cause Problem Elimination (RCPE) cases that were initiated, an improvement over 2020. In addition, we received and completed 166 customer sustainability requests, which spanned issues as diverse as product and environmental stewardship to health and safety practices.
Climate Change
305-1: Direct (scope 1) GHG emissions.

305-2: Energy indirect (Scope 2) GHG emissions

305-3: Other indirect (Scope 3) GHG emissions

305-7: Nitrogen oxides (NOx), sulfur oxides (SOx), and other significant air emissions
13.1 Strengthen resilience and adaptive capacity to climate-related hazards and natural disasters in all countries. In 2021, we achieved our 2025 GHG reduction target ahead of schedule by reducing our scope 1 and 2 absolute GHG emissions by 31.9% compared to 2015 levels, building on our 84.7% reduction in scope 1 and 2 emissions at our pulp, paper and tissue mills since 2000.

We have taken important steps toward further integrating sustainability practices in our supply chain: In 2021, we committed to working with our suppliers and related stakeholders to develop scope 3 GHG emission reduction commitments; and in 2022, the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi) validated our new emission reduction targets, which include a 41.5% reduction in absolute scope 1 and 2 emissions by 2026 from a 2015 base year, and a 16.5% reduction in scope 3 emissions within the same timeframe. Our scope 1 and 2 target is in line with a well-below 2°C trajectory, and our scope 3 target is in line with a 2°C trajectory, conforming to the SBTi Criteria and Recommendations (version 4.2). The target boundary includes biogenic emissions and removals from bioenergy feedstocks.

In 2021, we increased our score to a “B” from “B-” (Management level) in CDP's Climate Change program, indicating we are taking coordinated action on climate change and that we have taken steps to assess potential environmental risks to our business, as well as implemented actions to manage those risks. 

Resolute manages its air emissions using generally accepted pollution control technologies to minimize emissions of such contaminants as sulfur dioxide (SO2), nitrogen dioxide (NOx) and total particulate matter (TPM) concentrations that result primarily from the combustion of fuels.

For more information, visit Environmental Performance.
Forest Management, Fiber Sourcing Practices & Biodiversty
304-1: Operational sites owned, leased, managed in, or adjacent to, protected areas and areas of high biodiversity value outside protected areas

Note: forest management is not covered by the GRI Standards
15.1: By 2030, ensure conservation, restoration and sustainable use of terrestrial and inland freshwater ecosystems and their services, in particular forests, wetlands, mountains and drylands, in line with obligations under international agreements.

15.2 By 2020, promote the implementation of sustainable management of all types of forests, halt deforestation, restore degraded forests and substantially increase afforestation and reforestation globally.

15.5 Take urgent and significant action to reduce the degradation of natural habitats, halt the loss of biodiversity, and, by 2020, protect and prevent the extinction of threatened species.
Resolute's commitment to producing quality products that meet the criteria of today’s environmentally conscious stakeholders begins with responsible fiber sourcing. In 2021, Resolute maintained certification of 100% of our owned or managed forests to internationally recognized forest management standards, and we received an "A-" (Leadership level) score from CDP Forests, reflecting our environmental best practices, and the actions we have taken to manage harvest risk and implement monitoring programs.

In Canada, Resolute prepares 20- or 25-year forest management plans (updated every 5 years) in collaboration with government and other stakeholders. 100% of the woodlands we harvest are regenerated (natural and planted).

Resolute also actively protects biodiversity and species at risk by identifying and maintaining a proportion of over-mature stands in managed forests. We also participate in woodland caribou research and recovery plans, and foster forest health, including regeneration after harvest – which includes protecting watersheds, water resources, and the fish and wildlife that depend on them.

Resolute is also committed to maintaining chain of custody (CoC) certifications to internationally recognized standards at 100% of our facilities.

For more information, visit Forestry and Fiber Sourcing.
Environmental Compliance
307-1: Non-compliance with environmental laws and regulations 16.3 Promote the rule of law at the national and international levels and ensure equal access to justice for all. Resolute’s sustainability strategy is focused on moving beyond regulatory compliance and environmental incident management to differentiate the company as an environmental supplier of choice.

In 2021, Resolute recorded 12 class 1 and 2 environmental incidents, well below our target. Our 2022 target is to record 12 or fewer environmental incidents, with a long-term goal of zero incidents.

We also recorded two forest management incidents leading to regulatory infraction, and for 2022, set a target of no more than five incidents leading to regulatory infraction (excluding those of a strictly administrative nature) with a long-term goal of zero infractions.

Additionally, we trained approximately 165 of our directors, managers and superintendents to reinforce our commitment to environmental management and compliance. Training took place via four virtual sessions led by our Legal team.
Ethics, Integrity & Anti-corruption
102-16: Values, principles, standards, and norms of behavior

205-2: Communication and training about anti-corruption policies and procedures
16.5: Substantially reduce corruption and bribery in all their forms. Strong corporate governance is fundamental to Resolute Forest Products’ long-term success as an increasingly diversified, highly competitive and consistently profitable organization. In 2021, Resolute trained 100% of new employees on the company’s Code of Business, and remains committed to doing so on an annual basis. Employees are expected to maintain the highest level of ethics and integrity in their dealings with customers, suppliers, fellow employees, shareholders and other stakeholders; the foundations of these expectations are defined in our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics Reporting Policy. As we do on an annual basis, we also completed an annual review of our Code of Business Conduct and Ethics Reporting Policy.