FSC-Watch

An independent observer of the Forest Stewartship Council

Wall Street Journal exposes FSC policy chaosTags: Worldwide, Indonesia, Mixed sources labelling, Controlled wood, Certifier conflict of interest

The Wall Street Journal today ran the following story, the original of which is available here

FSC's 'Green' Label for Wood Products Gets Growing Pains

By TOM WRIGHT and JIM CARLTON

October 30, 2007

The environmental group that runs a widely recognized labeling system to identify "green" wood and paper products has acknowledged that some companies using its label are destroying pristine forests and says it plans to overhaul its rules...[Continue]

Colombia: Is the FSC Seal Applied to Blood-Stained Timber?Tags: Colombia, Rainforest Alliance SmartWood

In March 2007, FSC-watch posted the 'verdict' of the Peoples' Permanent Tribunal on the company Pizano SA, which had been FSC certified by SmartWood. The Peoples' Permanent Tribunal had been investigating the environmental and social impacts of companies in Colombia. Here's some more information about this FSC-certified company from Miguel Ángel Soto, Greenpeace Spain, and Tom Kuchartz, Ecologistas en Acción...[Continue]

SmartWood issues another controversial certificate to TembecTags: Canada, High Conservation Value Forests, Rainforest Alliance SmartWood

The FSC certification of large-scale industrial logging operations continues. A year ago, FSC-watch posted a critique of the certification of Tembec's logging operations in Canada.

Earlier this month, another one of Tembec's logging operations was certified, also by SmartWood. This post was written by David Nickarz, a forest activist in Winnipeg, Canada:

Tembec gets green logo in Manitoba

On October 11 2007, Tembec held an Open House seeking input into their 2009 to 2028 twenty year logging plan...[Continue]

Stop GE Trees Campaign seeks clarification of FSC's position on GM treesTags: Worldwide, GMOs

Following FSC-Watch's post questioning FSC's position on genetically modified trees, (and an article in the World Rainforest Movement Bulletin), the Stop GE Trees Campaign has written to Heiko Liedeker requesting clarification. Copies of the letter have also been sent to FSC's Board and to Andre de Freitas, FSC's Head of Policy and Standards...[Continue]

Barama, Guyana: WWF's 'suspended' star performer in South America accused by President of giant timber scamTags: Guyana, WWF, Legality, SGS Qualifor

At the start of this year, FSC-Watch reported on the 'suspension' of the FSC certificate of Malaysian-owned Guyanese logging company, Barama. A statement issued today by the President of Guyana, Bharrat Jagdeo, who accuses Barama of "fraud", will come as a further embarrassment to supporters of the certificate.

One of the issues which the 'suspension' of Barama's certificate raised was the extent to which the FSC system is able or unable to detect high-level fraud and corruption associated with companies seeking certification...[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]

FSC Ireland lurches into new crisis as key NGOs withdraw supportTags: Ireland, Soil Association Woodmark

FSC-Watch has reported numerous times on the shambles that is the FSC's Irish Forest Certification Initiative (IFCI), and the associated certificate issued to the state forestry company, Coillte. After more than six years of discussion, consuming copious amounts of funding and stakeholders' effort, IFCI has still failed to come up with a credible national standard.

Coillte, which controls 8% of the nation's land, was certified in 2001 under a weak draft national standard...[Continue]

Certification of Vasto Legno/SEFAC, Cameroon; Another major blow to FSC's credibilityTags: Cameroon, Legality, ICILA

FSC-Watch has received unconfirmed reports that the Italian certification company ICILA has issued a certificate to the Cameroonian Groupe SEFAC, which is owned by Italian timber company Vasto Legno. Although the Public Summary report of the certification is not yet available on ICILA's website, sufficient details have already emerged to suggest that this will come as yet another major blow to FSC's credibility.

The Vasto Legno subsidiary SEFAC (Société d'Exploitations Forestières et Agricoles du Cameroun), has been logging in the rainforests Cameroon's Eastern province for more than three decades...[Continue]

Banned chemicals used in FSC-certified nurseries in UruguayTags: Uruguay, Pesticides, Plantations, SGS Qualifor

RAP-AL Uruguay recently published a report on "Working conditions and agrochemical use in Eufores (Ence) and FOSA (Botnia) nurseries". Both of these operations are FSC-certified. The report, written by María Isabel Cárcamo, is based on research carried out at the nurseries.

The full report (in Spanish) is available here. RAP-AL is The Latin American Network of Action on Pesticides and their Alternatives (La Red de Acción en Plaguicidas y sus Alternativas de América Latina)...[Continue]

SmartWood's certification of TemRex criticisedTags: Canada, Corrective Action Requests, Hoped-for improvements, Rainforest Alliance SmartWood

Last month, SmartWood awarded an FSC certificate to TemRex's industrial logging operations in Quebec, Canada. The certificate came with 26 outstanding "corrective action requests" (with which the company has to comply at some point in the future), 20 "observations" (which are voluntary) and 10 "notes for future auditors".

FSC-watch received this from Bob Eichenberger with the subject line "bullshit in Gaspésie":

To all good foresters

The Forest Stewardship Council was a great idea and carried a lot of hope to anyone who read through the ten principles concerning the integrity of the forest ecosystems, the rights of rural and native peoples, biodiversity and so on...[Continue]

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