One of the questions that we receive on a fairly regular basis at FSC-Watch is, "What's your alternative?". There are several answers to this question. First, FSC-Watch exists to point out the flaws in the Forest Stewardship Council as it currently operates. Clearly, one "alternative" would be for FSC to address these flaws. For example, FSC could take seriously the problem that the certifying bodies are hired by the forestry company wanting to be certified. FSC-Watch has pointed out that this is a conflict of interest on many occasions...[Continue]
Karelian certificate challenged over damage to old growth forestTags: Russia, Certifier conflict of interest, Rainforest Alliance SmartWood
The following information has been supplied by the Russian NGO, SPOK.
This is yet another example of an FSC certificate issued by Rainforest Alliance SmartWood having to be challenged by NGOs. The logging company in question, Zapkarelles, has a concession of over 800,000 hectares of old growth forest in Karelia.
Regional NGO SPOK, Karelia, requests cancellation of FSC certificate for company 'Zapkarelles'
At the beginning of June, Karelian environmental NGO SPOK wrote an official letter to the Russian national office of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) requesting investigation of the forestry practises of forestry company 'Zapkarelles'...[Continue]
Thousands of Indigenous People evicted from FSC-certified Mount Elgon National Park, UgandaTags: Uganda, Indigenous Peoples, Hoped-for improvements, SGS Qualifor
In 2007, SGS Qualifor certified Mount Elgon National Park as "well managed" under the FSC system. Accreditation Services International found that SGS Qualifor's certification was based on hoped for future improvements, rather than what was actually happening in the National Park. ASI, however, failed to take any meaningful action against SGS Qualifor.
In February 2008, the Uganda Wildlife Authority, the agency responsible for managing Uganda's national parks, evicted more than 4,000 people from the indigenous Benet and Ndorobo communities living in Mount Elgon National Park...[Continue]
Another formal complaint against SCA's clearcuts in Sweden - this one from Greenpeace Nordic and SSNCTags: Sweden, Complaints procedures, High Conservation Value Forests, Greenpeace, SGS Qualifor
The Swedish Society for Nature Conservation (SSNC) and Greenpeace Nordic recently filed a formal complaint with FSC about the logging operations of SCA in northern Sweden. SSNC and Greenpeace Nordic's press release is posted below. The organisations are demanding that SCA's certificate be withdrawn.
These photographs were taken of SCA's logging operations at Ratnivaara, where SCA has already logged 30 hectares of high conservation value forest and is planning to clearcut a further 50 hectares (click on the photographs for larger versions - photos © Olli Manninen):
The following photographs were taken at Norrmyrberget, where SCA has clearcut 28 hectares of mixed coniferous and deciduous forest...[Continue]
FSC certified state forestry company 'rips-off' Ireland: officialTags: Ireland, Certifier conflict of interest, Soil Association Woodmark
Recent revelations in the Irish press have confirmed that, not only is the FSC-certified state forestry company, Coillte, responsible for massive environmental abuse but has also been ripping off the Irish state for tens of millions of euros.
The article below from the Irish Sunday Independent confirms that Coillte has also been guilty of the illegal use of European Commission grants, for which the irish State has been forced to re-pay millions of euros in fines...[Continue]
Yesterday, FSC organised a side-event at the Ninth Conference of Parties to the Convention on Biodiversity in Bonn. Activists from Global Forests Coalition and World Rainforest Movement made their voices heard at the side event.
FSC's panel responded to a series of questions from the moderator, Stefan Salvador, FSC's Chain of Custody Programme Manager. Hans Schipulle, Chairman of the Congo Basin Forestry Partnership, told us that modern methods of forest management are carbon neutral or even carbon negative, although he provided no evidence to back up this statement...[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]
Earlier this year, we reported on SmartWood's certification of Hancock Victoria Plantations, Australia. We have been asked to post this update by Anthony Amis, a local expert. Further images and details are available at Hancock Watch.
Hancock Victorian Plantations and Victoria's Department of Sustainability and Environment undermine Community Agreement
In October 2006, an historic Heads of Agreement was signed concerning rainforest protection in Victoria's Strzelecki Ranges...[Continue]
Coillte's pesticide-laden, monocultures are still certifiedTags: Ireland, Plantations, Soil Association Woodmark
PHOTO: Wally Menne
The description of Coillte's operations is spot on: "more than a million acres of pesticide-laden, monocultural and exotic Sitka spruce plantations"...[Continue]
Exposed: FSC-certified clear-cutting of Massachusetts public forests, USATags: USA, Accreditation controls, SCS
A new website launched recently reveals the destruction of Massachusetts public forests by clear-cutting, even though they have been FSC certified. Clearcutting MA Public Lands shows a series of aerial photographs taken by a local activist.
The more than half million acres of Massachusetts Public Forests, including the Savoy Forest, were certified by Scientific Certification Systems Inc, in August 2004. SCS evidently had difficulty in massaging the state public bodies through the certification process: of the 17 'conditions' which SCS had attached to the certificate between 2002, when assessment began, and 2004, only two conditions had been 'closed out' by the time the certificate was issued...[Continue]
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