Verso Paper Corp. Awards First Verso Forest Certification Grant To Sustainable Resource Institute (SRI) Inc.

Wed Sep 26, 2012 7:00am EDT

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Verso Paper Corp. Awards First Verso Forest Certification Grant To Sustainable Resource Institute (SRI) Inc.

Verso Paper Corp. (NYSE:VRS) today announced that Sustainable Resources Institute (SRI) Inc. will be the first recipient of a Verso Forest Certification Grant. The two-year grant will enable SRI to target the owners of small, private non-industrial properties (2,400 acres or less) in Michigan and help them achieve certification at an affordable cost. Third-party certification to credible forest management standards advances responsible management practices that keep U.S. forests vibrant and healthy. SRI’s first-year goal to certify an additional 15,000 acres has the potential to add up to 35,000 tons of certified fiber in the marketplace.

“We launched the Verso Forest Certification Grant program to increase certified fiber and certified acreage on lands near Verso’s three paper mills,” said Verso Senior Vice President of Manufacturing and Energy Lyle Fellows. “SRI’s grant proposal demonstrated not only a solid plan to help us advance this goal, but also strong partnerships with the Michigan Master Logger Certification program, the Michigan Association of Timbermen and others that provide a strong foundation for success.”

“The start-up funds provided by the Verso Forest Certification Grant will help us reach out to landowners who already have responsible forest management plans and offer them a more accessible path to affordable certification,” said SRI Executive Director Don Peterson. “We’re anxious to get underway and are committed to seeking additional funding from other sources to make sure we’re able to continue the terrific certification opportunities that Verso’s initial two-year funding provides.”

Anyone interested in learning more about the Verso Forest Certification Grant Program or in obtaining a grant application may contact:

Greg Barrows (greg.barrows@versopaper.com)
Verso Paper Corp. Bucksport Mill
P.O. Box 1200
2 River Road
Bucksport, ME 04417

About Verso

Based in Memphis, Tennessee, Verso Paper Corp. is a leading North American producer of coated papers, including coated groundwood and coated freesheet, and specialty products. Verso’s paper products are used primarily in media and marketing applications, including magazines, catalogs and commercial printing applications such as high-end advertising brochures, annual reports and direct-mail advertising. Additional information about Verso is available on the company's website at www.versopaper.com.

Forward-Looking Statements

In this press release, all statements that are not purely historical facts are forward-looking statements within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934. Forward-looking statements may be identified by the words “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “project,” “plan,” “estimate,” “intend” and similar expressions. Forward-looking statements are based on currently available business, economic, financial and other information and reflect management’s current beliefs, expectations and views with respect to future developments and their potential effects on Verso. Actual results could vary materially depending on risks and uncertainties that may affect Verso and its business. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, please refer to Verso’s filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. Verso assumes no obligation to update any forward-looking statement made in this press release to reflect subsequent events or circumstances or actual outcomes.

Verso Paper Corp.
Monica Garvey, 901-369-4154
Sustainability Manager
monica.garvey@versopaper.com
www.versopaper.com