PEFC /16-01-01


Next month, PEFC International will be hosting a Stakeholder Day entitled Strengthening the Link: Sustainable Biomass & Forest Certification.
Globally, wood is a massive source of energy and is the leading source of renewable energy. It contributes some 9% to the global primary energy supply and is estimated to supply 2 billion people with energy for household cooking and heating. In the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All, PEFC is convening a multistakeholder dialogue event to explore sustainability issues related to expanding use of forest biomass for energy and other industries, and the application of forest certification. The event seeks to build stronger relationships and understanding between sectors on sustainable forestry and promote the exchange of knowledge and available tools. It will aim to: n explore the landscape of biomass standards and policies for their ability to safeguard social, environmental and economic values within the context of forestry biomass production n assess the demand for and the role of proven forest certification systems in providing additional assurances to forest biomass production n engage a diverse group of stakeholders in an event focused on forests and how to realise their full potential and their sustainability in the light of growing energy demands n identify opportunities for collaboration amongst stakeholders. The event will take place on 14 November 2012 at the Parkhotel Schönbrunn in Vienna, Austria.
For further details visit:

Pictures courtesy of Scottish Woodlands

The PEFC Chain of Custody (CoC) Working Group confirmed at its last meeting that PEFC CoC certification will be able to satisfy the requirements of legislative and regulatory processes such as the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR), the U.S. Lacey Act, and the Australian Illegal Logging Prohibition Bill. In December 2011, The PEFC Board of Directors requested the Working Group to revise the PEFC Chain of Custody standard to ensure that all certified companies meet the EUTR requirements. Discussions among stakeholder representatives in the Working Group discussions focussed on the implementation of mandatory information requirements without placing an unnecessary burden on those unaffected by such legislation. Appropriate requirements will therefore be incorporated into PEFC’s Due Diligence System (DDS), which is an integral part of the Chain of Custody standard and therefore a mandatory element in CoC certification. However, PEFC’s DDS will still be available as a stand-alone mechanism, providing companies that are either not prepared or eligible to obtain full PEFC CoC certification, with a tool to demonstrate compliance with EUTR. The revised PEFC Chain of Custody standard with the modified Due Diligence System is scheduled to be approved by PEFC in February 2013.

For the second consecutive year, PEFC UK co-sponsored a Royal Forestry Society Award - this year for Excellence in Schools. The RFS is the UK’s largest forestry education charity. It was founded in 1882 and has almost 4,000 members.
Educational organisations from the West Country were invited to enter projects aimed at increasing young people’s understanding and appreciation of the environmental, social and economic potential of trees, woodlands and forests and of the link between trees and everyday wood products. Eight schools made it on to the shortlist and the winners ranged from a Nursery in Somerset to a Secondary School in Wiltshire. Midsomer Norton-based Free Rangers Forest Nursery School came first and the runner up was Okehampton Primary School. Trowbridge Secondary John of Gaunt School was highly commended. Next year, the Awards move to the North West of England and the Midlands. Schools and other educational organisations from Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Warwickshire, Shropshire, the West Midlands, Staffordshire, Cheshire, Greater Manchester, Merseyside, Lancashire, Cumbria and the Isle of Man will be able to take part. Entry is free with a £1,000 first prize and a £500 prize for the runner up.

For details go to and follow the ‘get involved’ links

In September, PEFC partnered with the Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) and the North American Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) to exhibit at Timber Expo for the second successive year.
This show aims to promote timber as a key material to help deliver an attractive and sustainable built environment to end user such as architects, specifiers and major contractors. 5000 visitors were pre-registered for the show and over 150 companies exhibited. Early feedback suggests that the event was a great success. The Timber Talks seminar programme proved particularly popular with many sessions seeing the three bespoke seminar theatres sold out. The Timber Buyers Forum once again provided a unique element to the show bringing future business partners together in a relaxed setting. This year PEFC were Bronze sponsors. This sponsorship guaranteed us a prime location at the show so we decided to invest in a new bespoke exhibition stand. It proved a worthwhile investment; PEFCcertified companies were delighted to see PEFC flying the flag for certified timber to influential end users such as architects and specifiers. Alun Watkins, who heads up PEFC in the UK, chaired a Timber Talks session and also gave a presentation on key market drivers for certified timber. The two-day show provided PEFC with an important platform to engage with a broad spectrum of stakeholders from across the timber and construction industry. We have therefore already booked for next year’s show which will take place at the Ricoh Arena, Coventry from 24-25 September 2013.

Alun Watkins, National Secretary, PEFC UK

For further details visit

The Wood First campaign has moved further forward with the start of a collaborative research and development project – Wood First Plus!
Launched at Timber Expo, the aim of the project is to create a central point of information containing all of the data necessary to promote timber and timber products as a ‘primary and preferred construction material’ along with a programme to communicate this key data to key audiences. Wood First calls for the introduction of a rule in local authority planning guidance. This would require sustainably-sourced wood to be considered, where feasible, as the primary construction material in all new-build and refurbishment projects. Such a rule is already in place in many other parts of the world, most notably France, as a key element of climate policy. Current proposals from the European Commission will enable the carbon stored in harvested wood products to be taken into account in national carbon budgets. “As the world’s largest forest certification organisation, PEFC is proud to support Wood First,” said Alun Watkins, from PEFC UK. “It is such an important campaign which we hope will help drive demand for products from responsibly-managed

forests. From our experience of working with local authorities, it is clear that a Wood First policy would help to complement their existing sustainable timber procurement strategies, as well as help them to meet their carbon reduction targets.” Wood First Plus involves core funding and the operations team of Wood for Good, Timber Trade Federation, Forestry Commission Scotland, and TRADA.

This month sees four new titles added to the growing PEFC resource library.
In response to popular demand, PEFC has updated and revised its introductory brochure PEFC Chain of Custody certification - The Key to Selling Certified Products. This publication helps companies familiarise themselves with the most essential elements of PEFC Chain of Custody certification and the requirements for using the PEFC logo and labels. Recognising that the Financial Services sector plays a key role in financing, insuring and investing in projects and companies involved in forest operations or related production and trade, PEFC has produced a new brochure The Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification and the Financial Sector. The brochure aims to explain how forest certification can help financial professionals manage environmental risk and verify sustainability. Joinery, Fit Out and Certified Timber aims to inform everyone from large fit out companies to the smallest joinery firm about the increasing requirements and expectations of timber to come from independently certified sources. Whether you are working with sheet materials such as plywood, hardboard, chipboard, OSB or MDF to working on hotel, commercial and retail joinery schemes including pub, bar or shop fit out, there are a range of Chain of Custody options worth exploring. Promoting Sustainable Forest Management provides an introduction to PEFC’s unique approach to forest certification. This new publication aims to explain to the wide range of interest groups with a stake in the world’s forests, what PEFC’s approach is and how they can get involved in the PEFC programme.

All the above titles are available to download from the PEFC website To request hard copies e-mail

Steve Cook, Principal Consultant for Willmott Dixon’s in-house sustainability consultancy Re-Thinking, has been appointed to the PEFC UK Board of Directors and will play a vital role in helping PEFC UK in 2013 and beyond. As part of Willmott Dixon Re-Thinking, Steve provides technical and practical support on materials, carbon, waste and sustainable procurement to all divisions within the Willmott Dixon Group and has recently been behind Willmott Dixon’s Group Sustainable Procurement Policy. Steve, who has 22 years’ experience in the construction industry, also chairs the UK Contractors Group (UKCG) Materials Task Group which, through engagement with the construction industry, is helping its members to develop organisational policy to improve the procurement of materials. Steve is also a Scheme Council member of the Eco-Reinforcement, responsible sourcing scheme. Everyone at PEFC is delighted that Steve has agreed to join the Board. He brings with him a wealth of experience and expertise which will help us to better understand and meet the requirements of one of our key stakeholder groups, UK construction contractors.

Stichting Milieukeur (SMK’s) Board of Appeal has rejected an appeal filed by a coalition of Dutch NGOs and confirmed that PEFC International‘s sustainability benchmarks conform to the Dutch Government’s procurement criteria.
This decision comes a year after the Dutch Timber Procurement Assessment Committee (TPAC) rejected an objection filed by NGOs as unsubstantiated and brings to a close an exhaustive 4-year long process that has confirmed at every stage that PEFC delivers sustainable forest management as defined in the Dutch criteria. Several civil society organisations filed an objection, and subsequently an appeal, against the original TPAC judgement including WWF Netherlands and other Dutch NGOs. Their main argument was that PEFC’s mutual recognition system does not guarantee that national PEFC forest certification systems conform to the Dutch procurement criteria. This argument was rejected and the appeal was dismissed. Welcoming the decision, PEFC’s Secretary General, Ben Gunneberg, commented that he was “delighted that the TPAC assessment and the subsequent challenges during the complaints and appeals process have confirmed that our standards are robust and comply with Dutch procurement criteria, which are arguably the strictest in the world”. He was pleased that the outcome of the complaints and appeals process provided clarity to stakeholders globally. He added that “no other forest certification system had ever been subjected to such close scrutiny as PEFC International and its endorsed national forest certification schemes. The results confirm that PEFC standards, as well as its bottom-up approach to certification, not only meet but exceed the high expectations demanded of them.” PEFC’s Chairman William Street also welcomed the decision saying that “this thorough investigation demonstrates that the claims that NGOs have repeatedly made about PEFC do not hold water”. He expressed his regret that this long drawn out process had placed a “substantial strain on PEFC’s resources and consequently reduced our ability to expand sustainable forest management to those areas of the globe in greatest need”. However, he hoped that the decision would enable NGOs to work cooperatively with PEFC for the common good of the world’s forests in the future.

PEFC Stakeholder Dialogue 14 November 2012 Parkhotel Schönbrunn in Vienna, Austria For further details visit: Ecobuild 2013 5-7 March 2013 ExCeL London For further details visit

Alun Watkins PEFC UK National Secretary e t 0114 307 2334 For all general enquiries and queries about Chain of Custody and use of the PEFC logo Hilary Khawam PEFC Communications Director e t 01689 819902 Marketing and communications enquiries

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful