Misinformation on Certification

Karl Davies karl at daviesand.com
Tue Mar 28 20:24:31 EST 2000

Here's a bit of well-meaning misinformation on certification from Grist
Magazine.  The problem lies in the assumption that the "certification"
programs for the different states are the same.  THEY'RE NOT.

Massachusetts state forests are "certified" under the American Forest &
Paper Association's Sustainable Forest Initiative program, which is not
a real certification program, but essentially an industry green-wash
program.  New York state forests are certified under the Forest
Stewardship Council's SmartWood program, a real third-party
certification program.  I'm not sure about the other states.  I think
Minnesota is under SmartWood and Pennsylvania is under SFI.

Joe Zorzin has a whole web page on this subject.  Perhaps he'll put the
url for that page into a follow-up message.

Consumer demand in Washington state for eco-friendly lumber is
surpassing supply, even as a growing number of wood products firms turn
to harvesting and selling timber from sustainably managed forests.  The
state Department of Natural Resources just announced that it would like
to have as much as 1.1 million acres of state forestland certified as
sustainably managed under the guidelines of the Forest Stewardship
Council, an international certification group.  Home Depot has
approached the DNR seeking certified wood; last year, the corporation
announced that by 2002 it will sell only lumber that has been certified
as eco-friendly.  Millions of acres of state, county, and municipal
lands in Massachusetts, Minnesota, New York, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin
have already been certified as green.

Karl Davies, Practicing Forester

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