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25.06.2008 :: partner

Into the wild

by Olga Apostolova :: Comments (0) :: (Read 4640 times)

FSC certified wood is in high demand these days. The market is valued at 2.5 billion dollars per year. It is used mainly for paper and furniture.
Out of all the environmental logos and certifications the FSC logo has got to be one of my favourite. I own just one FSC certified item bought in Bulgaria and that’s my German made Gardena hedge clippers. The wooden handles proudly display the FSC sign.

This sign guarantees a few things that I am not indifferent to. I know that the wood on my hedge clippers comes from a certified forest in one of 82 countries around the world that participate in the FSC programme, the standards for which were set in California back in the 1990s. Today the network of FSC certified forests covers almost 100 million hectars. Being certified means that trees are cut sporadically, taking into account the speed of natural recovery of the forest. You are not allowed to cut more than 2.5 acres per year in an area of 60-70 acres. This of course guarantees that biodiversity will not be affected and valued species will not lose their natural habitats. Furthermore, once a forest is certified you can not change its status for the duration of the certification.

Bulgaria may have a huge problem with illegal deforestation but there is some good news too. The WWF has already set up and successfully operates an Information centre for forest certification which supports those who wish to comply with the FSC standard in Bulgaria. In early June it was announced that subsidies will be made available to those who maintain certified forests. The payments they will receive are not huge – between 20 and 100 Euro per acre – but they will help towards certification fees (admittedly not very high – roughly 4 Euro per acre) and also cover ranger fees (whatever happened to the Bulgarian rangers, they must be a disappearing kind along with the Bulgarian forest). FSC certificates are valid for a five year period with experts monitoring the state of the forest every year.

FSC certified wood is in high demand these days. The market is valued at 2.5 billion dollars per year – mainly paper and furniture. Multinational companies that work with FSC paper partially or entirely include Bank of America, IKEA, Gap, The Body Shop, Patagonia, Johnson & Johnson and 3M Corporation. These companies simply take their environmental responsibility seriously.

In Bulgaria we have 6 certified forests with further eight having begun the process of certification. Among Bulgarian manufacturers with the certificate FSC Chain of custody (a special certificate for companies working with FSC material) are Troyan based "Hemus", "Plam Bulgaria” Kostenets, "Fackelmann Denev" in Veliko Turnovo and "BFT Trading" in Sofia. We can’t go wrong supporting them.

CC Licence: Attribution - NonCommercial - No Derivative Works

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