Sierra Club of/du Canada

SCC Forest Certification Bulletin


Bulletin Number 1 - Septmber 2001

This is the first issue of a regular bulletin prepared by the Sierra Club of Canada, providing a concise summary of key new developments related to certification, with a focus on issues in Canada. This bulletin responds to the oft-stated need to foster excellent communications about forest certification issues. At the same time, we know that many of you are already overwhelmed with information about this important subject, so the items in this bulletin will be brief, and will whenever possible suggest where interested people can learn more about the particular topic.

If you have information that you’d like to have added to future editions of the bulletin, or if you’d like to ensure that you receive future copies directly, or if you'd prefer not to receive the bulletin, please contact Martin von Mirbach at forests@sierraclub.ca. And let us know what you think – are you satisfied with the level of detail provided in this bulletin, and with the topics covered?



B.C. REGIONAL STANDARD OPEN FOR REVIEW

The second draft FSC standard for British Columbia is open for review and comment. The standard is available at www.fsc-bc.org, and there is also a useful guide to the standard that has been prepared by the West Coast Environmental Law Association, and is available at www.goodwoodwatch.org. The closing date for comments on the draft standard is September 10th, 2001.


STATUS OF FSC ONTARIO INITIATIVE

In August FSC Canada wrote to Ontario's Minister of Natural Resources John Snobelen to clarify FSC's views on how best to implement the joint initiative that had previously been announced.

- Regional standards, and the FSC regional standards development process, are fundamental to FSC's integrity and are the basis of any certification activity.

- OMNR will have to develop a specific action plan to reconcile First Nations issues meeting the requirements of Principle 3.

- OMNR should not focus on province-wide "group" certification, but rather collaborate in "on the ground" field tests and joint audits which would serve to identify recommendations for both operational and policy based changes to the respective systems.

- A forum should be held with OMNR, FSC and FSC-accredited certifiers leading to a practical dialogue on OMNR and FSC systems. For further information contact Jim McCarthy at FSC Canada, at jmaccarthy@fsccanada.org.


INDIGENOUS PEOPLES AND FSC CERTIFICATION FORUM

On August 17-18th there was a conference and workshop in Ottawa on the theme of how to apply Indigenous peoples' rights in FSC standards, as well as how to incorporate Indigenous peoples' input into the design of a national boreal standards process. Over 200 delegates and observers attended. A Strategic Directions paper based on input from the conference will be distributed for comment shortly, hopefully in mid September. It will be available at the post-conference website at www.fsccanada.org/IP_conference/, along with the full conference proceedings.


FSC SEEKING INPUT ON STANDARDS HARMONIZATION

FSC Canada is currently considering how best to balance the potentially conflicting needs for regional flexibility and international consistency in the development and refinement of FSC standards for Canada. An initial open forum took place in Ottawa on August 19th, and people with views on the matter are invited to respond to a questionnaire posted on the FSC website at www.fsccanada.org. Responses should be submitted to FSC by September 17th in order to inform an upcoming workshop on boreal standards (September 18-20) as well as the next meeting of the FSC Canada Working Group (September 23-25).


NEW FSC CANADA BOARD MEMBERS

The Forest Stewardship Council’s 2001 Annual General Meeting took place in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia in early June. At that meeting the FSC welcomed as new board members Gerard Szaraz (Social Chamber) and Martin von Mirbach (Environmental Chamber), and thanked outgoing Board members Adine Mees and Roberta Clowater for their valuable contributions.


GUIDE TO FSC STANDARDS DEVELOPMENT

The Taiga Rescue Network is releasing its revised edition of "FSC Standards Development Survival Guide," written by FSC International Board member Hannah Scrase and WWF's Anders Lindhe. The guide should shortly be available at the TRN's website at www.taigarescue.org. The guide is aimed primarily at those drafting or coordinating the development of FSC standards.


CSA STANDARD UP FOR REVISION

The Canadian Standard Association is currently revising its Sustainable Forest Management standard. A draft revised standard was made available for public review and several written comments were received, but the planned public sessions were cancelled due to lack of interest. The Technical Committee is currently in the process of incorporating the input received into a final draft, with the next meeting of the Technical Committee tentatively scheduled for October 1-3. The Canadian Environmental Network has appointed two members to the Technical Committee, Cliff Wallis (Alberta Wilderness Association) and Martin von Mirbach (Sierra Club of Canada). For further information contact Katie Altoft at the CSA, at katie.altoft@csa-international.org. Environmental groups can also receive the consultation draft from Martin von Mirbach at forests@sierraclub.ca, or tel: 613-241-4611.


CSA RELEASES ITS CHAIN OF CUSTODY CERTIFICATE

The Canadian Standards recently released a Chain of Custody certificate label, which allows for three different approaches to labeling. Where there is a completely certified product line a label can be affixed to the product. Where the "input-output" approach is used, then a label (such as "70% of this product line is from a certified forest") can be affixed to the product packaging. Where composite materials are used an on-product label ("70% of this content is from a certified forest") can be used. The details are published in a document entitled "Plus 1163," available from the CSA at www.csa.ca.



FURTHER INFORMATION


FSC CANADA
100 Broadview, Suite 421
Toronto, ON M4M 3H3
Tel: 416-778-5568
Fax: 416-778-0044
www.fsccanada.org

FSC CANADA - ENVIRONMENTAL CHAMBER REPRESENTATIVES

Denise English
East Kootenay Environmental Society
Tel: 250-344-2698
Fax: 250-344-2798
Email: denglish@redshift.bc.ca

Martin von Mirbach
Sierra Club of Canada
Tel: 613-241-4611 or 613-569-0034
Fax: 613-241-2292
Email: forests@sierraclub.ca

CANADIAN STANDARDS ASSOCIATION
178 Rexdale Blvd.
Toronto, ON M9W 1R3
Tel: 416-747-4000
Katie Altoft: katie.altoft@csa.ca
www.csa.ca