Just wanted to follow up on last week’s post about Clairefontaine paper and talk a bit about the company’s commitment to the environment… As I mentioned back in April, the Clairefontaine factory is at the forefront of environmental technology, recapturing the energy that’s given off during the manufacturing process to generate fully 80% of its own electricity. Wastewater is sent through special treatment stations in order to purify it and eliminate toxins; it’s then returned to the nearby River Meurthe. And as Christine Nusse, president of Clairefontaine’s parent company, Exaclair, told me a couple of weeks ago, even the sludge from that wastewater is made into a fertilizer.
Last week, I mentioned that both the wood and the pre-made pulp that are used in Clairefontaine paper come from from ecologically certified forests forests whose managers preserve ecological diversity and plant as many trees as they cut down. One of the more interesting things I just learned is that you don’t even necessarily have to cut down trees to make paper; instead, the fibers often come from byproducts of the foresting industry (recovered from scraps of wood that aren’t suitable for making furniture).
The Clairefontaine paper mill has been around since 1858, though a nearby monastery was apparently known for making vellum well before that.