Marcal Paper Calls On Congress to Eliminate Black Liquor Tax Credit


Oct 22, 2009, 16:53 ET from Marcal Paper LLC

ELMWOOD PARK, N.J., Oct. 22 /PRNewswire/ -- Marcal Paper LLC, the leader in manufacturing paper from 100 percent recycled paper, is pressing Congress to eliminate an enormous federal loophole that lets US paper manufacturers reap a windfall of millions of taxpayer dollars at the expense of the nation's forests.

The heart of the issue is whether a byproduct of the pulping process known as "black liquor" ought to qualify paper manufacturers for an alternative energy tax credit. When wood is transformed into pulp to make paper, the process creates a thick, dark liquid known as "black liquor." Paper companies have been using "black liquor" as fuel to run their mills since the 1930s. That led them to tap into $6.6 Billion of tax credits available from the Alternative Fuels Provision, part of the 2005 highway bill intended to support the use of alternative fuels for transportation. Marcal Paper CEO Tim Spring calls this outrageous. "That legislation was meant to support more green fuel use, not give billions of dollars for an industry practice that has been around for almost one hundred years."

"There is no greater hypocrisy than to have the paper industry, widely regarded as being culpable for an element of global warming through commercial deforestation, putting its hand out for billions of taxpayer dollars from the remnants of dead forests, under the guise of alternative fuel production," said Mr. Spring.

As such, Marcal supports the passage of HR 2967, to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 denying the alternative fuel and alternative fuel mixture credits for black liquor, and sponsored by Democratic U.S. Representative Ann Kirkpatrick of Arizona's 1st District. Since 1950, Marcal has been a pioneer in the paper recycling movement, making its consumer paper products from paper -- not from trees. Most of Marcal's paper is sourced from paper collected curbside in blue bins, from junk mail and offices.

"Not only is our environment in turmoil, but our national debt is an increasing problem. This payout is deplorable, given our nation's current economic circumstances," said Mr. Spring. "Organizations across industries are scrambling for bailouts for survival, yet many paper manufacturers are taking advantage of taxpayers' dollars and are being rewarded with a bonus for pillaging our forests."

Marcal's position has wide support. A coalition of 26 environmental advocates from ForestEthics and the Environmental Defense Fund to Conservatree and Greenpeace appealed to Congress in a letter recently: "The massive payments adversely bias the free market in an ecologically harmful way. The losers include more environmentally responsible producers using recycled paper content. Such mills, which are critical to developing a green jobs economy, are being put at severe disadvantage. These billions of dollars of payments are encouraging additional emissions of greenhouse gases at some of the most polluting and least efficient mills in America."

HR 2967 is currently under consideration by the House Ways and Means Committee. Also, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus has stated that committee is drafting a proposal to close the loophole by clarifying which fuels qualify for the alternative fuels tax credit and eliminate fuel derived from paper and pulp.

Marcal CEO Tim Spring is available to speak about why H.R. 2967 is a vital bill to stop paper industry giants from taking advantage of the planet and taxpayers. He is also available to discuss the company's line of high performing, affordable bath tissue, paper towels, napkins and facial tissue, as well as the recycled paper industry.

For journalists wishing to speak with Mr. Spring or who would like to tour the Marcal plant in New Jersey please contact Rachel Greenstein, Warner Communications, at 617-569-6269 or

About Marcal Paper Mills, LLC,

Since 1950, Marcal Paper Mills, LLC products have been made from premium recycled paper. The company is committed to producing high quality, performance paper products at an affordable price. Marcal manufactures paper towels, bath tissue, facial tissue and napkins for home consumption and to distributors for away-from-home use in hotels, restaurants, hospitals, offices, factories, and schools.

SOURCE Marcal Paper LLC