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3. - The EIA in the Pulp and Paper Industry

3.1 - Preamble

As shown in chapter 2, the EIA begins as soon as possible, once the first investigations are finished and the pre-feasibility study starts.

First step (Pre-environmental Impact Assessment)

The first step is to determine the types of processes to be chosen and the different potential sites to be studied. Following the financial and technical thinking throughout, the EIA becomes more precise at each phase, in order to propose the best processes and sites according to local resources and sensitivities.

Once the project is almost defined the EIA analyzes a small range of solutions which compares a few process variations and a few pre-selected sites. Sometimes there is only one site and only one process left.

Second step (detailed Environmental Impact Assessment)

The second step of the EIA begins by scoping and screening the main impacts to be studied. It is important to implement the “scoping” with local authorities and representatives of affected groups to avoid omitting potentially important impact. It is now appropriate to have the terms of reference of the EIA drawn up by a steering committee, in order to pinpoint the exact contents of the EIA and the best way to conduct it.

3.2 - Pre-environmental Impact Assessment

This part constitutes the first step of the EIA. It leads from the pre-feasibility study to a well defined project that can be shown to authorities and local representatives. This first step towards the project must be the result of a financial, technical and environmental analysis leading to the final project bringing together the best available technologies and the least sensitive sites. The environmental survey during this phase must analyze:

3.2.1 - Site selection

Due to the various negative repercussions of pulp and paper industries on man and the environment, it is not possible to set up such facilities anywhere. To be economically viable, the pre-selected sites must combine:

The pre-selection of the potential sites from an environmental point of view should be focused as shown in check-list 1. Both proposed sites for the plant and for raw material production must be studied.

Check-list 1: Pre-environmental site selection

Is the water supply sufficient all year long ?  
Is the water supply of good quality ?  
Are there sufficient raw material resources in this area ?  
Is a sustainable management of these resources possible ?  
Are there resources sensitive to the proposed exploitation scheme ?  
Are there threatened species in this area ?  
Are there sensitive biotopes like rain forest, mangrove, coastal zone, wetland ?  
Is the transport infrastructure sufficiently developed?  
If no, is there negative impact linked with the transportation framework to be built ?  
Is the energy supply assured ?  
If no, will the energy supply have negative impact ?  
Will the plant emissions have negative impact on the environment ?  
Are there affected groups ?  
Will the project destroy important man made patrimony ?  
Does the project imply resettlements ?  
If yes, are there sufficient land resources in the area to allow a correct resettlement ?  
Are there particular risks attached with this area ?  
Is there positive impact of the project in the area ? (to detail)  
Other (to be mentioned) ?  

3.2.2 - Raw material production and exploitation

If the raw material is a by-product of agricultural production, like cereal straw, or of industrial process, such as sawmill residues, it is not necessary to emphasize in the EIA the impact of raw material production because it is linked to agricultural or industrial production.

On the other hand, crops cultivated to supply material to the pulp and paper industry and forestry exploitation are operations that may involve severe negative impact on man and the environment. Thus analysis of these operations must be included in the EIA document.

This analysis has to address all the potential repercussions of the project very precisely, like the destruction of rain forests, the pollution of rivers and subsurface water, the depletion of biodiversity, the cultural and social risks in affected communities.

It is very relevant for integrated forestry and pulpmill projects, where extensive reforestation plans are set up, to study the consequences of both deforestation and reforestation. Risks like biodiversity depletion, fires, and erosion are likely to occur and must be addressed.

Deforestation and reforestation usually necessitate an assessment of the impact on:

At this stage it is most important to cross reference the possible impact of the project with the sensitivity of the site (see check-list 1). Meanwhile it is important to complete a special check-list for forestry management.

Check-list 2: Raw material production

Does the project include a forestry management plan ?  
If yes, is there negative impact on the remaining stands ?  
Are there threatened endemic species in this area ?  
Are exotic species supposed to be introduced ?  
If yes, are there references on comparable introductions ?  
Do these references indicate that such introductions have produced negative impact ?  
Are those species sensitive to fire ?  
Is the soil of this area sensible to erosion ?  
Is this area a water catchment ?  
Are there areas of cultural or religious interest for the local population ?  
Are there medicinal plants in this area ?  
Are those species threatened by the proposed exploitation/reforestation ?  
Does this forest produce significant food supply to the local population ?  
Is the project supposed to be profitable to local communities ?  
Have these communities been involved in the project conception ?  
Other (to detail)  

3.2.3 - Industrial processes

It is important to note here that the EIA is implemented before project construction. This implies that data will not be available on site. The EIA team must at this stage include a process specialist to predict the various emissions and performances of the proposed processes and procedures.

Generally, the choice between the main types of industrial processes tends to be made according to the paper quality to be produced rather than on environmental or financial considerations. Nevertheless once a main type of process is chosen (i.e., mechanical or chemical), many technologies are available to improve the performance of the process or to limit environmental issues. The role of the expert in charge of EIA, with the help of the process specialist(s), is more to input environmental considerations in the project definition than to propose technologies which are generally very sophisticated and hard to master for an environmental generalist.

Environmental issues are too complicated and interconnected to be solved one at a time. The limits of the “end of pipe” approach, commonly used during decades, are well-known and it is now necessary to use systematic approaches in order to introduce a more global conception of the environment and to address the source of the problems directly.

For the person conducting an EIA, this logical framework means that the sooner causes for concern are well understood, the better environmental issues are resolved. It is thus very important to put a strong emphasis on assessment before project implementation. This will prove not only more environmentally friendly but also more cost effective.

It is very important to note that technology is always evolving and, in the EIA team, it is the process specialist's role to propose the best available solution to any problem related to environmental considerations and human well-being. This chapter is mainly constructed to allow EIA authors to classify the project in comparison with international standards. The different tables given below provide simple data to help the EIA author.

Figure 8 : Simplified diagram of a typical pulp and paper process

Figure 8

Source: Environment Canada

The pulp and paper industry has made great progress in recent years. For example, a modern paper mill uses about 85% less water than it did 3 decades ago, reductions in Total Suspended Solids (TSS) and in five-days Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD5) have also been considerable. Table 1 shows process evolution and performances.

Table 1: Integrated kraft mill wastewater, TSS waste load and BOD5 waste load

TechnologyWaste water discharge
TSS waste load
BOD5 waste load
1964 Older110 00090 000200170200160
1964 current45 00027 00017013012090
1964 new25 00016 00090809080
1990 design16 0008 00050456050
% reduction 64/9085%91%75%73%70%69%

Source: K Ferguson

It is also important to remember that 70% of the pollution in a pulp and paper mill is caused in the pulp mill (due to pulping and associated operations like screening, washing, thickening and bleaching) and that the remaining 30% happens in the paper mill.

Table 2 shows the evolution of TSS, BOD5, COD and OM (oxidizable matter) from 1970 to 1987 in pulp mills and paper mills. These data show the decreasing pollution over a 17 years' period at 3 or 7 years' intervals, depending on the observed parameter.

Table 2: Evolution of TSS, BOD5, COD and OM waste loads in pulp mill and paper mill, from 1970 to 1987.

ParameterPulp mill (non mechanical)Paper mill
TSS42.1 14.7 11.1 29.7 5.4 4.3
BOD5- 16.3 13.2- 3.7 3.3
COD- 88.1 70.3- 9.2 8.5
OM227.2 40.2 33.2 16.0 5.5 5.0

Source: French Ministry of Environment. Enquête COPACEL

The water discharge pollution levels (before treatment) of different pulping processes are naturally variable. The Oxydizable Material (kg/t of pulp) can be a good indicator of this pollution. See Table 3.

Table 3: Oxydizable matter in water effluents of various processes.

ProcessOxydizable material (kg/t of pulp)
Unbleached Kraft15
Bleached Kraft50
Semi chemical90

Source: Centre Technique de l'Industrie des Papiers - Raw material storage and preparation - Storage

Large quantities of raw material are necessary to ensure the supply of the facility. These stocks can either be stored in the plant yard or close to the production site until entering the process.

In-plant stocks can be hazardous due to odours, polluted water leakage, fire or breakdown, depending on the type of raw material used. Outside the plant, stocks can have similar effects and also be the focus of infestation, principally by parasites like insects.

All these potential issues have to be addressed by EIA authors and mitigating measures have to be proposed if necessary. - Raw material preparation

While some pulp mills are supplied with pre-treated material like chips or saw dust, raw material most commonly needs to be transformed before entering the pulping process. This preparation, for instance in the case of wood, begins with debarking (bark is removed mechanically or in debarking drums) followed by chipping. Later chips are screened to obtain a product of uniform suitable size and to remove contraries such as stones and metal.

These operations can be different for other raw materials, nevertheless they often generate noise and dust, and they sometimes need a substantial water supply and thus produce big quantities of wastewater. Table 4 compares various debarking processes. For non-wood raw materials, problems are quite different. A screening is first necessary to eliminate undesired materials like seeds, leaves and dirt, which can represent up to 3% of the incoming material. Dry cleaning is usually effected in straw mills, where dust emissions have to be controlled. Wastewater discharge from wet cleaning involves solving far more complex problems than for wood preparation.

Table 4: Comparison of debarking processes

ParameterUnitsWet drumDry drumHydraulic jetMech ringPaprifer chip dbk
Effluent flowm3/t3–200–55–150–20
Suspended Solids(1)kg/t15–500–10 (2)10–300–30
BOD (1)kg/t5–100–3 (2)1–40–10
Energy consumption (3)k Wh/t202121360
Dryness of bark (4)% OD40–5550–5540–5550–5540–55
Reported operating costs (3)$/t2.
Residual bark softwood summer% wt0.5–10.5–10.1–0.40.2–0.52
Residual bark hardwood summer% wt0.5–11–2--5
Residual bark softwood winter% wt0.5–11–2-0.52
Residual bark hardwood winter% wt0.5–11–4--5

Source: Environment Canada

(1) Effluent data exclude BOD and SS from other sources in the plant
(2) Upper limits are due to use of flume to handle logs
(3) 1977 data from Environment Canada
(4) Lower limit reflecting difficulty of maintaining high efficiency in bark presses
(5) No data available: toxicity is probably low.

These data are typical for full scale installations, assuming that barker is suitable for the local wood supply. - Pulping

Pulping can be carried out through various processes, which use mechanical, chemical or both mechanical and chemical ways to transform raw material into fibres. The pulp yield (defined as the weight of oven-dry wood fibres produced from unit weight of oven-dry wood) of these processes is very different as shown in Table 5. Mechanical pulping reduces the wood to macerated cellulosic fibres which are generally damaged and still carry non-cellulosic wood components. Due to this particularity, the yield of mechanical pulping is very high. Conversely, chemical pulping dissolves all non-cellulosic wood components in liquors; thus yields are lower than in mechanical pulping. Semi-chemical pulping process has intermediate yields.

Table 5: Typical pulp yields

Pulping processYield
Unbleached Kraft50–55%
Bleached Kraft43–48%
Dissolving sulphite33–40%
Low yield sulphite46–55%
Medium yield sulphite55–65%
High yield sulphite65–80%
Chemi-thermo-mechanical pulp80–90%
Thermo-mechanical pulp91–95%
Stone groundwood94–96%

Source: Environment Canada

Pulping in the above table covers the complete operation from raw material preparation to bleaching, and thus includes cleaning, washing and thickening operations. - Mechanical pulping

Various mechanical pulping processes are in use and they generally present comparable results.

Mechanical processes produce effluents, gaseous emissions and solid wastes. In TMP, the cleaner reject stream can represent 1% of pulp production (mostly composed by fibres, dirt and sand). Without a recycling system, the chip washer rejects about 5 kg/t of pulp produced. On the other hand, there is an extremely high consumption of whitewater (from 20 to 100 m3/t pulp produced) and this flow can carry, depending on the type of process, from 50 to 150 mg of fibre per litre.

Suspended solids can be discharged accidentally. Common values vary from 7 to 50 kg/t pulp. BOD loads levels and toxicity decrease as the yield increases. (see Table 6).

Gaseous emissions are mainly composed of steam. The amount of solid wastes produced at all stages of the process can be from 15 to 30 kg/t.

Table 6 : Dissolved organic substances, BOD, COD and suspended solid discharges from mechanical pulping.


Stone groundwood pulping (SGW) Refiner mechanical pulping (RMP)Thermo-mechanical pulping (TMP)
Dissolved organic substances (%)1–222–5
BOD (kg/t)10–2212–2510–30
COD (kg/t)22–5023–5522–60
Suspended solids (kg/t)10–5010–5010–50

Source: UNEP - Chemi-mechanical and semi-chemical pulping

For these methods, pulps can be processed like TMP with the addition of a chemical pre-treatment, commonly with sodium sulphite or by a quick cooking followed by a mechanical treatment. Semi-chemical pulping was first developed in order to use a larger range of hardwood species. The yields of such methods vary from 60 to 80%.

Principal methods are: - Chemical pulping

Contrary to the processes described above, chemical pulping mainly uses chemical energy to separate fibres from raw material. Generally, more than 90% of the lignin is removed from the wood, resulting in lower pulping yields (from 40 to 55%). There are two principal pulping processes : acid (sulphite) or alkaline (kraft).

Table 7: By-products of a typical sulphite cook

CompoundOriginQuantity (kg/t pulp)
MethanolMethoxyl groups of the glucoronoxylan7–10
Acetic acidAcetyl groups of the xylan30–90
Formic acidBisulphite oxidation of formaldehyde0.5–1
FormaldehydeHydroxymethyl groups of lignin2–6
Methyl GlyoxalDegradation of hexoses5–6
FurfuralDehydration of pentoses5–6
Sugarsulphonic and aldolic acidsBisulphite substitution and oxidation of sugars150–200
SugarsHemicellulose and cellulose200–400
CynemeBisulphite oxidation of terpenes0.3–1

Source: S.A.Rydholm

Table 8: Characteristics of ultra high yield sulphite spruce pulps for various processes

Consolidated Bathurst systemCIP process (SCMP)Price Abitibi processOpco processTypical TMP process
Na2SO3, on wood (%)64–747–120
Reaction temperature(°C)147150100135–170135
Reaction time (h)
Yield on wood80–8588949095
Refiner energy(MWh/t)
Freeness (CSF)600300100187125
Effluent BOD5 (Kg/t)10080205020

Source : Environment Canada - Non-wood fibrous material processes

Processes for transforming these raw materials are generally similar to those used to deal with wood. Table 9 shows the main constituents of some non-wood fibrous raw material compared to wood. Some specificities of non-wood material sometimes involve adaptations of the standard processes, especially for handling and initial preparation.

Table 9 : Concentrations of important chemical constituents in various fibre sources


Cellulose (%)Pentosan (%)Lignin (%)Ash (%)Silica (%)
Cotton Linters80–85 31–1.5 
Flax70–80  0.7–1.3 
Hemp65–75  1.0 
Jute60–65  0.7 
Rice straw25–35251214–186–8
Cereal straw35–5025–3015–206–82.5

Source: World Bank

The most commonly used non-wood materials are cereal straw, rice straw, bamboo and bagasse. Two processes, soda and sulphate are widely developed. They produce paper of similar qualities. Non-wood pulp is considerably more difficult to wash than wood pulp, thus washing requires 25 to 30% more water than for wood. Chemical losses are more important than those of wood mills (2 to 5 times more) as BOD discharges and solids suspended in liquors are less important. - The particular case of recycled paper

Recycled paper is becoming a major source of raw material world-wide. If, considered from a civic point of view, it seems to be an excellent occasion to preserve natural fibre stocks, it is not so evident from an environmental point of view. The preparation of recycled paper requires particular treatments which can produce polluted water and highly toxic solid wastes, difficult to eliminate.

The main problem to solve, when starting pulping operations, is to remove contaminants such as wires, staples, plastic and strings. Once the raw material is purified, de-inking is usually necessary. Two ways of achieving this are available at base: flotation de-inking and washing de-inking.

The main advantages of a flotation system are: high yield (85 to 95%), lower water consumption than in washing de-inking, simple implementation of a closed water circuit, since the process inorganic fillers are not removed. On the contrary, washing de-inking has lower yield, larger water consumption and generates larger volumes of contaminated effluent, since process inorganic fillers are removed. Due to its advantages the flotation system has become predominant. Table 10 shows the main characteristics of water consumption and pollutant loads for both processes.

Table 10 : Examples of fresh water consumption, BOD7, COD and TDS in secondary fibre processing according to different processes

ParameterWater consumption (m3/t)BOD7 (Kg/t)COD (Kg/t)TDS (Kg/t)
ProcessTotal amountDissolved amountTotal amountDissolved amount
Mechanical treatment115154040NA
De-inking by flotation10402514055100
De-inking by washing90503019065130

Source: UNEP - Synthesis of pulping analysis

Table 11: shows the typical newsprint pulp and effluent characteristics of the main processes described in this brochure.

Table 11 : Typical newsprint pulp and effluent characteristics


Freeness (ml CSF)100100100100350500500
Shive contents (%) 
Bauer McNett + 30 (%)1523253740-86
Bauer McNett 30–200 (%)5555523935-12
Bauer McNett -200 (%)3022232425-645
Breaking length30003600360039005000600010000
Tear index (mN.M2/g)
Sulphur dioxide00002.55 
Specific energy (Gj/t)557752.7 
Yield (%)96969593888050
BOD Kg/t7–1510–1510–2510–3570130250

Source: Environment Canada - Bleaching

Pulp products coming from mechanical or chemical pulping processes are from brown to beige depending on the raw material and process used. At this stage, pulp can be manufactured to go into the fabrication of products such as newsprint, boxes, packaging, etc. To produce white paper, bleaching is necessary. This operation combines removal and alteration of dark products included into the pulp. The bleaching operations sequence widely depends on the type of pulp to be bleached and the end product to be produced.

The result of bleaching is commonly measured on a brightness scale. The two major reflectance photometers in use are the General Electric Brightness Meter (GE) and the Elrepho Photoelectric Reflectance Photometer. There are some discrepancies in value between these two systems but they are generally very limited. - Mechanical pulp bleaching

The main objective in mechanical pulping is to bleach the pulp without letting lignin become soluble. Hydrosulphites are the agents most frequently used, but zinc hydrosulphites are considered more and more unacceptable. Peroxides can also be used but are more expensive. Table 12 shows bleaching processes for mechanical pulp and their efficiency. The yield from mechanical pulp bleaching can be over 99%, usually between 95 and 99%. Dissolved substances are mainly organic and increase BOD in the mill effluents.

Table 12 : Bleaching processes for mechanical pulps

Bleaching processUsual method of applicationBrightness increase (GE Units)
Sodium bisulphiteApplied at grinders or to chips before refining1–4
Sodium hydrosulphiteAdded to pulp before entering tower or storage chest3–6
Zinc hydrosulphiteNot environmentally acceptable 
Sodium borohydrideNot used commercially 
SO2 BorolAdded in sequence to pulp before storage chest10
Calcium hypochloriteLimited to hardwoods, added ahead of storage chest10–12
Sodium hypochlorite  
Hydrogen peroxideUsually in tower process, sometime on wet machine10–14
Sodium peroxideNot used commercially10
Peracetic acid  
Peroxide-hydrosulphiteTower process12–18

Source: Environment Canada - Chemical pulp bleaching

While chemical pulping is first of all a delignification process, chemical pulp bleaching is often the continuation of this operation. Chemical pulping is mainly achieved by kraft and sulphite processes. Bleaching kraft pulp is much harder than bleaching sulphite pulp because of the initial colour of the pulp; the brightness of kraft pulp is about 20 while that of sulphite pulp is almost 60.

Bleaching is mostly conducted with a succession of chlorination, alkaline extraction and oxidation. One cycle is usually sufficient to raise the brightness of sulphite pulps to 90. For kraft pulps 2 or 3 cycles are still necessary.

Effluents from bleaching operations are the main source of colouring agents and often very toxic substances, chlorinated organic compounds can represent 3 to 8 kg/t pulp, in some cases dioxin can be discharged (this is discussed in the next chapter). Table 13 shows the sources of bleach plant effluent colours.

Table 13: Sources of bleach plant effluent colour in American Public Health Association (APHA) chloroplatinate Units.

Raw material

(kg/t pulp)
(kg/t pulp)
Caustic extraction22678
Chlorine dioxide116
2nd Caustic extraction64
2nd Chlorine dioxide11

Source: Environment Canada

Some variations in the conventional process have been developed to try to reduce bleach plant effluents toxicity.

Table 14 shows the characteristics of chemicals used in bleaching.

Table 14 : Chemicals used in bleaching

ChlorineGasOxidize and chlorinate ligninEffective, economical delignification and good particle bleachingCan cause loss of pulp strength if used improperly
OxygenGas used with NaOH solutionOxidize and solubilize ligninLow chemical cost, provides chlorine-free effluents for recoveryUsed in large amounts requires expensive equipment, can cause loss of pulp strength
HypochloriteCa(OCl) or NaOCl solution 40g/lOxidize, brighten and solubilize ligninEasy to make and use, good particle bleachingCan cause loss of pulp strength if used improperly expensive
Chlorine dioxide7 to 10g/l ClO2 solution in water1 Oxidize, brighten and solubilize lignin 1 (In small amounts with Cl2) protect against degradation of pulpAchieves high brightness without pulp degradation, good particle bleachingExpensive, must be made on site
Hydrogen peroxide2 to 5% solutionOxidize and brighten lignin in chemical acid high yield pulpEasy to use, low capital costExpensive, poor particle bleaching
OzoneGasOxidize, brighten and solubilize ligninEffective, provides chloride free effluents for recoveryExpensive, degrades pulp, poor particle bleaching
HydrosulphiteSolutionReduce and brighten lignin in high yield pulpsEasy to use, low capital costDecomposes readily limited brightness gain
Alkali5 to 10 NaOH solutionHydrolyze chlorolignin and solubilize ligninEffective and economicalDarkens pulps

Source: D W Reeve - Dioxins emissions

Dioxin and furans are toxic chemicals that contain chlorine and are trace elements found after the bleaching stage. Dioxin found in paper and in effluents belongs to several groups: tetrachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (TCDD), octachlorodibenzo-p-dioxin (OCDD), and tetrachlorodibenzo-furan (TCDF). Dioxin is produced in the pulp mill during the bleaching operation. At this stage the quantity of chlorine entering the process is directly linked with the dioxin production. Consequently solutions to reduce dioxin production are to try and replace chlorine by chlorine dioxide in the bleach plant and by oxygen for delignification.

Technologies available today seem to bring satisfactory solutions to deal with that problem. The EIA authors must take care of that particular point. - Papermaking

As reported in this chapter, about 70% of the pollution originates in the pulp mill and the balance, 30%, in the paper mill; nevertheless pollution can still occur at this stage and must be addressed in the EIA.

Papermaking is generally divided into four main operations: stock preparation, sheet formation, drying and finishing. These operations involve the use of large amounts of water, chemicals, additives and fillers depending on the type of paper to be produced.

Water is the main concern at this stage, since pulp enters the stock preparation plant at a consistency varying from 3 to 12%, while paper at the end of the process will have 10 percent moisture content. For each ton of paper produced, 7 to 30 tons of water have to be discharged. Table 15 shows water consumption and pollution for a range of paper qualities.

Table 15 : Water consumption and discharges of suspended solids and BOD7 in modern paper mills


Type of paper
Water consumption
Suspended solids
Magazine paper20–3010–202–4
Wood free printing paper10–2012–253–6
Kraft paper10–208–151–3
Folding boxboard20–302–82–5
Food board20–402–82–5
Corrugating medium10–2010–251–3

Source: UNEP

The toxicity of some additives also has to be addressed, particularly heavy metals like mercury. Conversely, there are no environmentally significant gaseous emissions since steam is non toxic but very visible. - Energy consumption

Paper manufacturing is energy intensive. Three quarter ton of oil equivalent (toe) are necessary to product one ton of paper in developed countries and from one to two toe (sometimes more) in developing countries, and only 50% of this energy can be self-generated by incineration of in-plant organic wastes. Energy is a major cost factor for this type of production. In some cases energy cost can exceed that of raw material. Vast improvements, brought about by increasing energy costs, have been achieved in the past decades. Table 16 shows some data on this progression.

Table 16 : Typical process energy requirements before and after internal energy-efficiency improvement (heat in GJ and power in k Wh/t)

ProcessBefore Energy-Efficiency ImprovementAfter Energy-Efficiency Improvement
BK PulpLinerboardNewsprintBK PulpLinerboardNewsprint
Wood preparation0.1650.1550.1450.1600.1500.145
Pulping and washing3.51203.0210-17102.81152.4200-1625
Pulp drying3.6160----2.5150----
Chemical recovery5.5754.265--4.1703.360--
Stock preparation---240-100---230-95
Paper machines--6.51905.8250--4.61804.1240

Source: World Bank

It is generally agreed that small plants have a higher energy consumption than large ones, and that a plant working under capacity results in an over-consumption of energy.

3.2.4 Check-list for industrial process

Check-list 3 : Impacts of industrial process during pre-EIA phase

Are the standards proposed by the investor in compliance with new mills performances ?  
Is the estimated water consumption in compliance with new mills performances ?  
Is the water from raw material preparation recycled ?  
Are the wastes from raw material preparation valorized ?  
Does the future plant include in plant processes to lower noxious emissions ?  
Does the future plant include out plant processes to lower noxious emissions ?  
Will the wastewater emissions be in compliance with national standards ?  
Will the wastewater emissions be in compliance with international standards ?  
Will the gaseous emissions be in compliance with national standards ?  
Will the gaseous emissions be in compliance with international standards ?  
Is the composition of solid wastes characterized ?  
Are the treatments of those wastes studied in the project ?  
Does the future plant include chemical recovery ?  
If yes, are the performances of this process in compliance with standard data ?  
Does the bleaching phase include non chlorine processes ?  
Does the bleaching phase produce dioxins or furans ?  
Are the energy performances in compliance with new mills performances ?  
Is there a training programme for plant personnel in the project ?  
Is a monitoring programme included in the project conception ?  
Are there particular risks attached with the proposed technologies ?  
If yes, is there a detailed study of those risks ?  
Is it proposed to establish the base of an Emergency Response Plan in the EIA ?  
Are the risks involved by the plant cross referenced with site sensitivity ?  
Others (to detail)  

3.2.5 - Transportation facilities and constraints

In most cases, transport of raw materials, general supplies and final products causes an increase in traffic around the facilities. Transportation may have repercussions, hence the need to consider the five key activities concerned: planning transport development, siting transport facilities, the construction of transport infrastructure, maintenance and operation of transport infrastructure and the use of transport infrastructure and vehicle maintenance.

Check-list 4 : Impacts of transportation

Does the project involve important changes in transport network ?  
Does the project involve important changes in traffic conditions ?  
Have the alternatives : road/rail/shipping been studied in the project ?  
Have the alternative routes been studied precisely in the project ?  
Is there public financing involved in infrastructure construction ?  
Is there investor financing involved in infrastructure maintenance ?  
Is there a training plan for drivers included in the project ?  
Is there a precise study on fuel storage, risks, transports, etc. ?  
Are there significant communities affected by transportation issues ?  
Are there special facilities proposed to protect communities from transports issues ?  
Are there special facilities proposed to protect the environment from transports issues ?  
Others (to detail)  

3.2.6 - Project justifications

Once the different sites are pre-selected and a comparative analysis effected, and once the best technologies available have been selected to remedy possible environmental problems, the project is well defined and can be presented to the authorities and the affected populations.

The definition of the project represents extensive studies and work. This aspect must be valorized at this stage of the EIA to explain as precisely as possible the reasons which have led to advocate the project as it stands. Matrix explanation of why each site, resource, process, infrastructure, have been chosen over others can help to justify the project.

Depending on the authorities' requirements, the owners' choice or other considerations, the EIA plan can vary from case to case. Some EIAs study the different alternatives right to the end of the assessment and leave the final decision to the authorities, some others, as presented before, define the best project in the best site and then propose to study more precisely its environmental and social impacts. There are no standard best solutions, each case must be treated as a particular case where the best solution has to be defined by the steering committee.

Chapter 3.2 showed that great advances in raw material, energy and water supply have been accomplished during the past decades. New technologies and processes have also led to a decrease in pollutant emissions and thus to an improvement in environmental protection. The role of the EIA author is to assist the investor's team in order to define together what is possible while setting up a viable project which does not have uncontrolled negative impact on the environment and communities.

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