FSC-Watch

An independent observer of the Forest Stewartship Council

FSC: Stop certifying monoculture tree plantationsTags: Brazil, Ireland, South Africa, Spain, Uruguay, Plantations

This month's World Rainforest Movement Bulletin focusses on the International Day Against Monoculture Tree Plantations on 21 September. The Bulletin explains why a campaign against industrial tree plantations is important, includes materials for campaigns as well as news and analysis from around the world about struggles against plantations.

One article looks at FSC's record in certifying of plantations. If FSC is to take its own standards seriously, it must stop certifying monoculture tree plantations (a fully referenced version of this article is available here):

FSC: Stop certifying monoculture tree plantations!

By Chris Lang...[Continue]

ENCE loses one certificate in Spain. Soon to lose another in Uruguay?Tags: Uruguay, Spain, Plantations, Suspended certificates, SGS Qualifor

On 19 June 2008, Spanish pulp company ENCE lost its FSC certification in Spain, when its subsidiaries Norte Forestal (Norfor) and Silvasur had their certificate withdrawn. Norfor manages just over 12,000 hectares of industrial tree plantations in the northeast of Spain and Silvasur has almost 70,000 hectares in Andalusia. Both companies were certified by SGS Qualifor in October 2004. The Norfor certificate was questioned by Greenpeace, WWF, the Asociación Pola Defensa Da Ría, Verdegaia, and Association for the Ecological Defence of Galicia...[Continue]

Another NGO quits FSC in protest against NORFOR plantationsTags: Galicia, Spain, Plantations, SGS Qualifor

Galician environmental group the Association for the Ecological Defence of Galicia (ADEGA) has announced the withdrawal of its support to FSC, at least until the the certificate of NORFOR, ENCE's eucalyptus plantation operation, is cancelled.

ADEGA was the only major Galician NGO that continued supporting FSC after the Galician environmental movement as a whole withdraw its support to the certificate in 2006...[Continue]

Call for cancellation of NORFOR certificateTags: Galicia, Spain, Plantations, Certifier conflict of interest, Accreditation controls, Complaints procedures, SGS Qualifor

Galician environmental group Verdegaia and a confederation of 300 environmental groups from Spain have demanded that the the FSC certificate of eucalyptus plantation company NORFOR should be immediately cancelled.

As FSC-Watch has previously reported, the certificate has already been the subject of a formal complaint. Unsurprisingly, this has resulted in no action by FSC - though FSC continues to maintain the fiction that it has an effective complaints procedure...[Continue]

Galicia, Spain: formal complaint submitted against NORFOR and ASITags: Galicia, Spain, Plantations, Accreditation controls, SGS Qualifor

The Galician environmental group Asociacion Pola Defensa da Ria (APDR) has submitted a formal complaint to the FSC about the certification of plantation company NORFOR and the assessment of it's certifier, SGS that was undertaken by FSC's Accreditation Services International. In their complaint, APDR argues that the FSC-ASI report on SGS's certification of NORFOR is not only of very low quality, but it also fails to address the majority of the criticisms of NORFOR presented by a number of NGOs...[Continue]

'Low quality' SGS targetted in Greenpeace protest campaignTags: Spain, Poland, Guyana, Greenpeace, SGS Qualifor

As previously reported on FSC-Watch, the certification of the Spanish industrial plantation company, NORFOR, has caused widespread concern, which a recent FSC inspection of the company's certifier, SGS, has only served to heighten. Despite finding clear non-compliances with FSC's Principles and Criteria, the certificate remains in place.

Greenpeace Spain has now launched a letter-writing campaign against SGS, asking the certifier to "stop damaging the good name of the FSC start an in-depth review towards improving the professional quality of your audits, evaluation methodology and, especially, the company's ethical code." The 'cyber-action' campaign, in both Spanish and English, also cites other SGS controversial certificates, including in Guyana and Poland...[Continue]

NORFOR, Spain: FSC confirms that SGS certfied a non-compliant companyTags: Spain, SGS Qualifor

At the end of last year, FSC-Watch reported on the certification of the Galician plantation company, NORFOR. The company has been the source of much controversy and opposition from local people. Following an investigation into NORFOR's certifier, SGS, FSC's own Accreditation Services International has now reported that environmental concerns were justified, and that the company was non-compliant with FSC's Principles and Criteria...[Continue]

Green groups demand cancellation of certificates in Galicia and UruguayTags: Spain, Plantations

From the galician ecologist movement to the FSC

In Galicia, we have been suffering for many years the consequences of the dreadful influence of the company ENCE in our natural environment and in our economy. The forestry branch of ENCE, dedicated to the monoculture and trading of eucalyptus wood for the manufacturing of pulp has played a role that has caused the impoverishment and abandonment of rural communities, abandonment of forestry lands, what causes a high risk of fire, has caused intense erosion of lands of its own and held with other companies due to the plantation methods applied, has used, on a massive basis, large volumes of pesticides that have caused the loss of biological diversity and the destruction of resources, has polluted streams and underground aquifers, has caused the loss of fitness of the forest for leisure purposes, has replaced natural systems protected by the Directive on Habitats and has caused the loss of quality of the landscape of the areas occupied by their activities...[Continue]