The life cycle inventory presented in Table 4 represents the average European production of corrugated board products with an average corrugated base paper composition, based on the data received during from mills and plants participating in the 2020 survey. As previously explained, the coverage of the 2020 survey is significantly increased for the 2020 survey compared to the 2017 survey. Whilst this means that the life cycle inventory presented in this version of the report is more representative of the weighted European average production, it also means that it is not valid to compare this current inventory with previous versions of the dataset.
Changes in the coverage of the papermills participating in the survey are particularly influential on the results achieved.
Therefore, in order to investigate trends, a comparison has also been made on a like-for-like basis, considering only those mills which also contributed data to the 2017 survey. Key findings from this like-for-like comparison are:
• Total wood consumption per tonne of corrugated board product is reduced by 18% from 0.22 tonnes per tonne to 0.18 tonnes per tonne.
• Total recovered paper consumption per tonne of corrugated board product is reduced by 4% from 1.09 tonnes per tonne to 1.05 tonnes per tonne.
• Purchased electricity is increased by 7% from 1.24 GJ per tonne to 1.33 GJ per tonne, but consumption of external fuels has decreased by 3% from 6.18 GJ per tonne to 6.00 GJ per tonne. In particular, consumption of fossil fuels has decreased by 5% from 5.43 GJ per tonne to 5.14 GJ per tonne.
• Subsequently, fossil CO2 emissions have been reduced by 2% from 342 kg per tonne to 336 kg per tonne. Emissions of CO2 from biogenic sources have also been reduced by 12% from 294 kg per tonne to 258 kg per tonne
• Other emissions to air have also been reduced. For example:
- NOx emissions have been reduced by 28% from 0.58 kg per tonne to 0.42 kg per tonne.
- SOx emissions have been reduced by 33% from 0.15 kg per tonne to 0.10 kg per tonne.
• Total water input is reduced by 6% from 13.55 m3 per tonne to 12.79 m3 per tonne.