Sierra Club of/du Canada

SCC Forest Certification Bulletin

Bulletin Number 3 - November 2001

This bulletin has been prepared by the Sierra Club of Canada, and provides a concise summary of key new developments related to certification, with a focus on issues in Canada. It is distributed by email and available on the Sierra Club of Canada’s website at

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 And let us know what you think – are you satisfied with the level of detail provided in this bulletin, and with the topics covered?


On October 26th the Meridian Institute released its in-depth analysis of the Forest Stewardship Council and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) forest certification schemes. The study was commissioned by FSC, SFI and Home Depot, and was intended to provide a non-biased comparison of the two programs, highlighting their differences and similarities. The study found that the SFI program places a stronger emphasis on outreach, education and research, while the FSC program is more focused on the social impacts of forestry operations and places more explicit restrictions on intensive management, plantations and the use of GMOs. The full report is available at


On October 17th the Sierra Club of Canada withdrew from the Technical Committee revising the CSA SFM standard. The Sierra Club objected that the CSA fails to make an adequate distinction between a performance standard (i.e., with specified on-the-ground minimum requirements) and a performance framework (such as requiring a public participation process and specifying the topics to be dealt with). Without such clarity the Sierra Club believes that the CSA standard could be promoted as though it is a performance standard, in which case Sierra Club stated that it does not meet their minimum expectations. The Sierra Club reiterated its willingness to assist CSA in developing a true performance standard if it wishes to do so. For further information contact Martin von Mirbach at


The Certified Forest Products International Conference & Showcase, originally scheduled for 26-28 September in Atlanta Georgia, has been rescheduled for 25-27 April 2002. FSC suppliers from around the world will present their selections to a broad specialist clientele. For more information, see


We’re including the most up-to-date information available, but some of these scheduled events may be subject to change.

Jan. 18-20, 2002 FSC Canada Working Group meeting, Québec City

Feb. 4-8, 2002 FSC International Board meeting, Oaxaca

April 23-25, 2002 Rescheduled Certified Forest Products showcase in Atlanta, Georgia, including meetings of the FSC International Board and the FSC Canada Working Group

June 3-7, 2002 3rd FSC General Assembly, Oaxaca. The Annual General Assembly will be preceded by two days of meetings for each chamber of the FSC

June 15-16, 2002 FSC Canada Annual General Meeting, Edmonton


ProForest, a forestry consultant, has written a guide providing practical advice to anyone wishing to set up an FSC group certification scheme. Offering step-by-step guidance, the manual also describes three different model group schemes as practical examples and includes templates to facilitate the documentation required for a group scheme plan. The manual also gives insight into various aspects of FSC chain-of-custody certification. Titled A Practical Guide to Developing a Group Scheme for FSC-Accredited Certification of Forests, the publication can be downloaded from

Behind the Logo is a report published by the European forest NGO Fern, comparing several forest certification schemes across a range of twelve criteria. The schemes examined include the CSA, the FSC, the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI) developed by the American Forest and Paper Association) and a number of certification schemes under the Pan-European Forest Certification (PEFC) umbrella. The report can be obtained from

Taiga-News, the newsletter of the Taiga Rescue Network, is available at Its most recent issue (#36, late summer 2001), includes suggestions for strengthening the Swedish FSC standard and a summary of “Behind the Logo.”

The Canadian Sustainable Forestry Certification Coalition is an industry coalition whose website ( has information about the current status of certification across Canada.


100 Broadview, Suite 421
Toronto, ON M4M 3H3
Tel: 416-778-5568
Fax: 416-778-0044


Denise English
East Kootenay Environmental Society
Tel: 250-344-2698
Fax: 250-344-2798

Martin von Mirbach
Sierra Club of Canada
Tel: 613-241-4611 or 613-569-0034
Fax: 613-241-2292

178 Rexdale Blvd.
Toronto, ON M9W 1R3
Tel: 416-747-4000
Katie Altoft: