From the notebook of business editor Tim Rausch

Kimberly-Clark adopts policy to reduce trees in products

Kimberly-Clark Corp. is trying to come up with a greener Kleenex.

 

Pun intended.

 

Kimberly-Clark, which makes diapers and paper towels in Beech Island, has instituted a new environmental plan that is supposed reduce the amount of wood it uses from forests by half by 2025.

 

The company, which used nearly 750,000 metric tons of wood fiber in 2011, currently is test marketing tissue products which contain 20 percent bamboo in North America. It already has tissues in the U.K. that is 90 percent recycled and 10 percent bamboo. The company is also test marketing tissue products made partially from wheat straw.

 

Suhas Apte, vice president for global sustainability for Kimberly-Clark, said: “In the long run, we hope that one day all of our fiber needs will be met from sources that collectively have maximum land use efficiencies, while minimising the impact on people and our planet.”

 

JULY 11: That’s when the direct flights from Augusta to Washington, D.C., begin on U.S. Airways.

 

MORE NEW HOMES: This week, the Commerce Department reported that builders broke ground on more homes for the third consecutive month. Augusta, year-to-date, is doing slightly better this year than in previous one.

 

For the week ending June 17, there were 1,113 new home permits pulled for the three-county core of the Augusta metro area. By that time in 2011, there were 1,024 new home permits. In 2010, for the first six and half months of the year, there were 1,098 new home permits.

 

A LOT OF KIDS WITHOUT JOBS: Now that it is officially summer, you think summer jobs. Well, a Washington think tank came out with a study of the Census that put both South Carolina and Georgia in the list of states with teen unemployment above 25 percent.

 

The Georgia rate, according to the Employment Policies Institute, for those age 16 to 19 in May was 28.5 percent; in South Carolina, 32.6 percent.

 

When the institute added the number of teen unemployed to the number of teens who aren't counted in the labor force because they're discouraged and not actively seeking a job, the rate got worse: 29.9 percent in Georgia and 33.9 percent in South Carolina.

 

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