Paper continues to be available in sufficient amounts
Renewable raw materials and recycling solutions are widely used; sustainable resource use instead of consumption has become a well-established principle. The feared 100% increase in global energy consumption could be prevented by measures like better thermal insulation and new energy concepts. Around one third of the landmass is wooded, which means there is an adequate supply of renewable, carbon-neutral fibrous material for paper production. CO2 emissions continue to go down and most of the primary energy demand can be met by biomass power plants since the paper industry is continuously improving its energy efficiency. Recycling processes have become highly profitable and are frequently the basis of resource-neutral production and circuit closure. The precise labelling of goods and services has been made mandatory. Sustainability is a widely accepted principle governing the buying patterns of large consumer groups.
Premises for 2050
- Widespread and steadily growing use of renewable resources; ”cradle-to-cradle” philosophy has made recycling an obligation
- Recycling processes are highly economical and serve as basis for resource-neutral products and circuit closure
- Sustainable resource use instead of consumption is a firmly established guideline that governs the buying behaviour of consumers thanks to the mandatory labelling of goods and services
- Around one third of the landmass is wooded.
- The feared 100% increase in global energy consumption could be prevented by measures like thermal insulation or ventilation, much more energy-efficient megacities, better mobility and new energy concepts.
Ideas directly related to paper until 2030
- Bio bags: a fibre-based, liquid-proof, recyclable and environment-friendly alternative
- Textile materials with paper fibres: usefully combine the properties of cellulose and other natural fibres; paper-fibre substrates enable completely new materials and forming processes.
- Electrically conductive paper: lightweight circuit boards printed on paper or paperboard substrates are recyclable and sustainably available.
- Water-saving production: modified or completely ”dry“ manufacturing processes have massively reduced the demand for water and drying energy, costs and carbon dioxide emissions in manufacturing.
- Base materials for electronic components: combination of cutting-edge electronic components with low-cost papers, e.g. for sensor solutions that make documents visible only after verifying the reader by fingerprint identification.
- “Healing paper“: microencapsulation materials enable “self-healing“ surfaces as basis for safer and more reliable components, to prevent permanent damage, reduce maintenance and repair work.
Ideas indirectly related to paper
- Fully automated waste sorting plants: separate reusable, compostable and residual waste products and materials – large-scale plants for landfill sites, smaller ones for self-sufficient districts/buildings; higher sorting accuracy and optimised processes.
- Small-scale biogas plants: paper fibres are added to the plant biomass for decentralized energy generation in the basements of private houses.
- Smart catalytic converters: inverse papers are used instead of rare earth metals