Table of contents:
- FSC certification and PEFC stand for responsible forestry
- Ecological standards thanks to FSC certification
- The FSC certification
- PEFC certification should stop forest destruction
- PEFC: independent and global
Forests in many parts of the world are ruthlessly managed - to the detriment of the region, its inhabitants and the environment: clear cuts cause slopes to slide, workers and the local population are excluded from corporate profits. Felled trees are often not replaced, leaving ecologically unused fallow land. The destruction of tropical rainforests is made jointly responsible for the global climate catastrophe. Certifications like FSC and PEFC should give the consumer security when it comes to sustainability.
Forest is the basis of life for plants, animals and humans, and it regulates our climate. But our forests are in danger: Mostly in the tropics, between eleven and 15 million hectares of forest are destroyed each year - that's half the area of the Federal Republic. But it is important to protect forests and preserve them for future generations - with economical, environmentally friendly and socially compatible forest management. The PEFC and FSC certification is intended to control, document and improve forest management.
FSC certification and PEFC stand for responsible forestry
So-called certified wood does not come from overexploitation, but from sustainable forestry. The certifications of two independent organizations have the greatest credibility: Forest Stewardship Council FSC and Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes PEFC. The product chain certification of the FSC continuously monitors the flow of wood from the forest to the end customer. This ensures that all companies involved work according to the FSC standards. The PEFC certification system also combines ecological, social and economic aspects.
Ecological standards thanks to FSC certification
The Forest Stewardship Council FSC is committed to combining forestry and timber management all over the world with acceptable working conditions and respect for our ecosystem.
The FSC logo.
The FSC Council was founded in 1991 by experts from environmental organizations and trade unions, companies in the forestry and timber industry, and representatives of the interests of the local population. The FSC develops ecological and social standards for companies and supports the marketing of products from responsible forestry and timber industries - such products are allowed to carry the FSC certificate. Independent auditors from the FSC check annually whether forest owners comply with the standards. Further tests during further processing ensure that FSC wood is not mixed with other woods.
The FSC certification
The FSC certification recognizes wood products that come from sustainably and socially compatible forests or that are made from recycled materials. The products go through a so-called product chain from the forest to the consumer - this is also continuously checked by the FSC. The FSC product chain certification guarantees that construction or furniture wood comes from a monitored and responsibly managed forest company - the control includes proof of origin, the plausibility of the quantity and the exclusive processing of certified wood. Wood with the FSC certificate can be clearly identified at every processing and trading level. FSC-certified material generally does not cost more than conventional material and gives the consumer the opportunity to build, renovate and buy in an environmentally friendly manner.
The Forest Stewardship Council FSC is committed to combining forestry and timber management with acceptable working conditions and respect for our ecosystem all over the world.
Photo: iStock / markaumark
PEFC certification should stop forest destruction
According to official information, PEFC is a transparent and independent system for ensuring sustainable forest management and thus a worldwide “forest TÜV”.
The PEFC logo.
PEFC is the abbreviation for the English term "Programs for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes", ie a "program for the recognition of forest certification systems". Forest certification according to the standards of PEFC is based on the strict guidelines for the sustainable management of forests. This management is controlled by independent organizations. If a product made of wood bears the PEFC seal, this means that the entire product production, from the raw material to the ready-to-use end product, is certified and checked by experts.
PEFC: independent and global
In Germany, 7.3 million hectares of forest are already PEFC-certified - about two thirds of the German forests. This makes PEFC Germany's largest independent institution for ensuring sustainable forest management - and at the same time the most important forest protection organization. In addition, PEFC has developed into a global organization. Today, around 240 million hectares of forest are managed according to PEFC standards around the world.