Tuesday, 01 December 2015
FSC Canada releases forest management standard for public consultation
Working together to move Canadian Forestry into the 21st century
[December 1, 2015] The Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) Canada is proud to present a draft national forest management standard representing leadership in forest management.
“FSC Canada’s four chamber approach to standards development ensures that certificate holders and buyers of FSC certified products are part of the solution to address challenging issues such as conservation, economic prosperity and community engagement” says Francois Dufresne, President of FSC Canada.
Proactive and comprehensive, the standard aims to advance current practice. Significant adaptations include the reconciliation of Aboriginal Rights in forest management planning, protection of endangered species and recognition of progressive labour practices whilst confirming that forests are essential to sustain rural and northern livelihoods.
“Providing a necessary yet workable approach to fostering relationships for mutual benefit is key” notes Brenda St. Denis, Aboriginal Chamber. “You don’t always get 100% but for the most part we are able to come to an understanding. FSC allows different groups in the forest to take a path to collaboration”.
FSC certification provides a connection between the forest and the end user, ensuring that products with the FSC label uphold principles and criteria which bring the highest social and environmental benefits. Environmental Chamber representative, Pier – Olivier Boudreault stated, “Forests are vital to the future of our planet. With over 50 million hectares certified to FSC’s standards in Canada, we are engaged to improve the management of our natural resources. We’re optimistic that FSC’s new standard will play a strong role in addressing issues that no other forest certification system covers, such as woodland caribou conservation and free, prior and informed consent from First Nations.”.
Arne Bercov, Social Chamber member pointed out that “Forests aren't just economic or ecological resources, they play an enormous role in the health and well-being of communities. FSC helps to create opportunities for entrepreneurs, large industry, Aboriginal managers and forest owners while keeping the rights of the labour force front and centre”.
Thousands of products carry the FSC trademark globally, demonstrating Chain of Custody between FSC certified products and forests. “FSC enables businesses and consumers to make informed choices about the forest products they buy, said Drew Tremblay Economic Chamber.
The FSC Canada National Forest Management Standard is built upon an approved framework of principles, criteria and indicators set by FSC International which is adapted for Canada’s vast and diverse forested landscape. The FSC relies upon an engaged community of stakeholders from private landowners and communities to forestry industry, NGO’s labour, government and tenure holders to review and comment on this draft as a key component in the development of a workable standard.
This draft of the standard is the culmination of a three year process involving dozens of individuals and organizations across Canada. A final version of the standard is set to be completed by December 2016.
A discussion paper addressing Intact Forest Landscapes in Canada will be issued for public consultation in the upcoming weeks.
FSC Canada encourages all interested parties to review the standard during the consultation period which ends at midnight local time on February 2nd, 2016.