2009 saw the tenth anniversary ofthe PEFC Council. Over the pastten years we have seen forestcertication grow to cover 8% ofthe world’s forest area and over aquarter of the world’s roundwoodproduction. And of that PEFC isresponsible for two thirds of theareas and volumes.
This is a good start for ten years, butwe need to bear in mind that forestcertication was originally developedto provide a market mechanism toaddress the challenges faced bytropical wood producing countries.However, certication over that periodwas primarily taken up in the temperatenorth with over 90% of certicationtaking place in Europe and NorthAmerica. So the easy low hanging fruithave been picked. With certicationbecoming the mainstay of increasingnumbers of public and privateprocurement policies around the world,the challenge now is to mainstreamcertication of sustainable managedforests and to extend the reach of thistool to the global south. In so doing,certication needs to become relevantto tackling many of the challengesfacing society including climate changeand rural development. This requirespartnerships and working together toincrease the value of certication, notonly to the market place, but also tosociety.Over the last year PEFC has seenthe rst endorsements of certicationsystems in Asia (Malaysia), Africa(Gabon) and Russia. We will need tobuild on these early successes andgrow the certied forest resourceto meet the ever increasing marketdemand for certied productsincreasingly being demanded byconsumers.We look forward to working with allstakeholders over the next ten years toexpand the reach and benets of forestcertication worldwide to the markets,customers, and forest dependentcommunities including forest owners,workers and indigenous peoples. Muchfocus in the last ten years has rightlybeen on the environmental benetsof sustainably managed forests. Nowit’s the time to ensure the socialcontributions of forest and forestrelated activities are better understoodby society and reected in sustainableforest management practices worldwideand it goes without saying that theeconomic viability of forests will becrucial to deliver these social andenvironmental benets.William StreetBen Gunneberg
a letter from the chairmanand Secretary General