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Global Challenges for Certification

Global Challenges for Certification



A presentation by Ben Gunneberg, the Secretary General of PEFC International, given at the May 2010 Stakeholder Dialogue held in Geneva, Switzerland.

A presentation by Ben Gunneberg, the Secretary General of PEFC International, given at the May 2010 Stakeholder Dialogue held in Geneva, Switzerland.



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  • Really stressing the role of PEFC as an Alliance, to hit home why we are connected to Russian Standard and why we see the international significance of today’s event.
  • We do need to realize that only 8% of the world's forest are certified. This corresponds to 26% of the global industrial round wood production. And if you think that 26% does sound like a lot, keep in mind that it has taken the two global certification organisations almost 20 years to get to this level. What's more, according to the UN, the rate of increase in global certified forest area has slowed dramatically since 2006.
  • There's more to this problem: More than 80% of today's certification happens in Western Europe and North America, regions where forest management has been traditionally quite responsible, with strong forest legislation and law enforcement. Forest certification has not made much progress in certifying tropical forests – and you may recall that this was the primary objective when forest certification was first set up. Tropical forests is where forest certification can really make a difference, and the challenge is to make certification relevant there. We do need to look closely at why forest certification has not succeeded there, and how we can better adapt our approaches to certifying forests in these areas. There's also an additional challenge: More and more public and private procurement policies require sustainable timber – which essentially excludes timber from the Global South, given that only small parts there are certified. How can we expand certification in the Global South?

Global Challenges for Certification Global Challenges for Certification Presentation Transcript

  • Global Challenges for Certification PEFC Stakeholder Dialogue Geneva 26 th May 2010 Ben Gunneberg PEFC Council Secretary General
  • Over last ten years:
    • Increasing public and consumer awareness and knowledge
    • Increasing involvement by governments at all levels
    • Concept of “ corporate social responsibility " adopted – and implemented – by more and more companies
        • Forest management has become a global procurement issue
    • The rise of issues such as climate change, social issues, biodiversity – and the potential contribution by forests especially in the tropics
        • Forest certification is now a solution provider
    • However….
  • Challenge 1: Expansion of Certification
    • Only 8% of the world’s forests are certified – have we stalled?
    • Only 26% of the world’s industrial roundwood supply is certified – after almost 20 years of forest certification
    • 66% of the total area certified to PEFC
    8% 26% 66%
  • Challenge 2: Distribution of certification 180 million ha, 56% of world’s certified forests 82 million ha, 26% of world’s certified forests CIS = Commonwealth of independent states Source: UNECE/FAO Forest Products Annual Market Review 2008-2009
    • Legislation and procurement policies as drivers for sustainable and legal timber stimulate demand for certified product and are welcomed:
      • Legislation (Lacey Act, Due Diligence Proposal EU)
      • Bilateral Agreements – FLEGT; MoU China & Indonesia, etc
      • Public Procurement Policies (CPET, TPAC, ICLEI, EU Ecoflower etc)
      • Green Buildings initiatives
      • Responsible Purchasing Policies & Codes of Conduct
    • Need to ensure they remain drivers and do not become barriers
    Challenge 3: Securing Market Access
  • PEFC Standards Revision needs to ensure that:
    • Meta standard requirements are flexible enough to be applicable to all national processes,
    • Resulting national certification requirements are feasible, realistic and cost-effective.
    • Both the Meta standard requirements and resulting national certification standards and systems are robust enough to provide confidence to deliver key market and stakeholder expectations
    • Finding the right balance is the challenge
  • Dialogue Today
    • Today we will present the results of a year’s work
    • We want to listen to your views and have discussions aimed at collectively enhancing everyones’ understanding of the issues
    • This Dialogue builds on the work of multi-stakeholder working groups, complemented by a series of workshops involving specialists, including NGOs, Indigenous peoples, procurement officials, labour unions, scientists and others.