EU Timber Regulations Sanction Imposed

Dutch Impose Sanctions for Violation of European Timber Regulations

Following on from an investigation into the controversial Cameroonian timber trade CCT, conducted by Greenpeace, the Netherlands have imposed their very first sanction on a Dutch company for EU Timber Regulation breaches. The Cameroonian Timber Trade CCT, are known to be sourcing timber from companies who are involved in exporting timber to several countries in Europe through illegal logging.

Greenpeace Netherlands Forest campaigner, Meike Rijksen, said “In its capacity as the current EU Council Presidency, the Netherlands can help bring an end to the trade in illegal timber across Europe. We call on the Dutch Government to demand a political commitment by the EU member-states to make sure European companies follow the rule of law by keeping illegal timber out of the market.”

Greenpeace put forward their concern to the Dutch authorities about the CCT trading in the suspected illegal logging operations, this resulted in a penalty for the Dutch company. The authorities stated that, “Because of the political situation in the Congo Basin, timber from Cameroon may only be placed on the market if the importer has taken sufficient mitigating measures to make sure the risk that the timber is illegally harvested is negligible.”

Furthermore, Greenpeace also found timber from the CCT in Germany, Spain, and Belgium. Greenpeace are putting forward their concerns to the relevant authorities in these countries, so that action can be adequately enforced.

Irene Wabiwa, the Forest Campaign Manager for Greenpeace Africa, said: “The Cameroonian government needs to tackle the illegalities and corruption in the timber sector. Cameroon needs to seriously work with the EU to ensure the Voluntary Partnership Agreement aimed at combatting illegal logging and strengthening forest governance in Cameroon is fully implemented. As a first step we strongly encourage the Cameroonian Ministry of Forestry to properly examine the companies mentioned in our report and sanction them if illegal activities are confirmed.”

If you would like to find out more about how you can become more environmentally friendly and be part of protecting our trees and forests, please get in touch.
If you are looking to become FSC certified, and prove to your customers and suppliers that you are committed to sustainable forestry, get in touch, we can help.

Some of this information has been taken from Blue Green Tomorrow Find out more by clicking the link.

PEFC Certification – Print, Paper, and Packaging

PEFC Chain of Custody Certification for the Print, Paper, and Packaging Industries

There is an increasing insistence for sustainably sourced and produced wood-based goods throughout the world. As climate change and environmental unease are prevalent, consumers are progressively looking for affirmation that the products and services they buy, are sustainably produced and sourced, and that they can be traced right the way back to the forest.
PEFC Certification is one of the simplest and most guaranteed ways that you can demonstrate your commitment to sustainably managed forests. As a buyer, purchasing the products you need from a PEFC Certified supplier.

What might I be buying as a consumer where PEFC Chain of Custody Certification is what I should check for?

You might be purchasing office supplies such as paper, stationary or desks. Perhaps it is someone’s birthday coming up, and you are out buying a greeting card for him or her. Or maybe you are having real wood floor in your home. These are just some examples of when you should be looking for the PEFC logo. You can ensure that you are committed to maintaining a sustainable environment by looking for the green tree logo.

What are some of the benefits to us as a business?

  • Chain of Custody Certification is one of the important steps needed to meet the requirements of the EU Timber Regulation Due Diligence.
  • Being a PEFC Chain of Custody certified printing company means that you can ensure your customers that you are providing a service, which can be traced from forest to end user.
  • You will be assuring your customers and stakeholders that any, and all paper used within your organisation has been sustainably and legally sourced.
  • PEFC Certification reduced the risk, to both you and your customer.

If you want to find out more information about PEFC Certification visit out services page; here you can find out how Ligna Ltd can help you with gaining certification.

In the meantime, feel free to follow us on Twitter or give us a call should you have further questions.

Some of this information was taken from the PEFC website.

FSC Certification Benefit

FSC Logo

FSC – Forests for All Forever


A new WWF study has found that there is a solid economic benefit resulting from FSC Certification in addition to the various environmental and social benefits. The study has determined that forestry companies can earn, on average, an extra US$1.80 (UK£1.14) for every cubic metre of FSC Certified Timber.

FSC Director General, Kim Carstensen, noted that “Previous studies have shown that FSC Certification has a positive impact on the environment, and the people who live and work in forests, but it’s been harder to show the true financial benefit for the businesses who partner with us. We are an NGO, but we are also an important tool in the marketplace, and we can only be successful in safeguarding the world’s forests if it makes good business sense. That is the premise of certification, and it’s the success of FSC”.

What is perhaps most interesting about this WWF study is that it shows that those who benefit the most from FSC certification are the tropical forest companies and small/medium enterprises. This is because they typically received the largest premiums, regardless of country or region.

Carstensen remarked, “Tropical forests are vital to the future of the planet, and the communities who reply on them for their livelihoods need netter access. FSC certification helps provide that, and the price premiums reflect the high-end and niche markets they tend to supply. Investing in sustainable tropical timber is essential to the future of our forests”.

This study, conducted by the WWF included research gathered on eleven companies in seven different countries. It has explored the possibility of an economic case for forest operators, in addition to the environmental and social, in adopting FSC certification.

Ligna Ltd provides expert support and service to the forest, timber and paper industries. FSC chain of custody certification is extremely important to us and so this study has been of high interest. We are pleased with the outcome and hope that it has answered questions about the value and importance of FSC Certification in the forest industry.

If you are looking for FSC certification, please get in touch. We can help you with the process and explain your next steps. We provide consultancy, auditing, training and reporting and can help your organisation stay ahead of the market.

You can call 01952 288324 to speak to one of our team today or fill in an enquiry form and we will get back to you as soon as possible. You may also like to follow us on Twitter, where you can keep up with all of our latest news and information.

Some of this information has been taken from the WWF and FSC You can also find more information on this study by clicking the WWF and FSC links provided.

Sustainable Timber and Timber Products

A Sustainable Future

The WWF-UK Timber Scorecard, which measures the yearly progress of timber and timber products buyers on their sustainability, has found that the construction industry are clear leaders in building a future without deforestation; a sustainable future.

The campaign, run by WWF-UK, is to prevent unsustainable timber from ever entering the UK market. Their aim is for a solely sustainable forest goods market by 2020 to wipe out deforestation; if all timber and timber products were responsibly sourced, there would be near to zero illegal logging and deforestation. To accomplish this goal they are asking for help and co-operation from UK businesses, asking that they pledge to buy timber products from sustainable sources and market their support of this campaign in transitioning to a 100% sustainable UK market.

To measure how far along the campaign is and how much companies in the UK are doing to work towards this sustainable future, WWF-UK reviewed 128 UK trading companies. The review focused on each company’s policy for sourcing sustainable timber, their claims on purchasing of the sustainably verifiable timber or timber products, and their performance measured against the WWF’s Global Forest and Trade Network (GFTN) or equivalent.

The results indicated that many companies still have a lot of work to do in securing a 100% sustainable UK market.

  • 74 of the 128 companies (57%) showed limited or no action taken to guarantee that the timber or timber products they sell are not contributing to deforestation or illegal logging.
  • 48 out of the 128 companies (37%) showed no action at all.
  • All of the construction companies reviewed appeared in the top 40%, showing that the construction industry was most committed to this cause.

Sectors such as retailers, (especially furniture retailers) publishers and musical instrument manufacturers, all trade in products that are not within the scope of the EUTR; such industries make up the majority of the lower percentile. Those who do trade in products that fall outside of the scope of the EUTR are not legally obliged to carry out due diligence to ensure their products are legally sourced.

This confirms that unsustainable and illegally sourced timber and timber products are still making their way into the UK market. Consumers, Businesses and the Government all have a responsibility to ensure that the UK’s timber and timber products are sourced from sustainable forests. This is imperative to our planet; responsible sourcing means that timber is a renewable and a re-useable material. Deforestation increases carbon-dioxide levels, therefore, responsibly sourced forest products decrease the carbon-dioxide levels in our atmosphere.

The Timber Scorecard results were shown using trees:

  • Three green trees – indicating the best commitment to sustainable forest sourcing, with most of them using FSC Certified timber and timber products
  • Two green trees – these companies have begun their journey to a sustainable future and have made commitments to only source timber and timber products that are FSC, PEFC or recycled
  • One green tree – companies with this score have only just started to take note and address the sustainability of their timber and timber products
  • 1+ and 2+ – those with a score that has a plus sign after are companies who have not made all of their information publically available. The 1+ indicated that a further tree may be awarded should more information be revealed
  • No trees – these companies have communicated little information indicating no progress, or acknowledgement of making any, on sourcing sustainable timber and timber products

Among the 22 companies who scored three green trees are Marks and Spencer, Travis Perkins, Sainsbury’s, Morrisons, B&Q (UK), and Macmillan Publishers.

If you would like to read the full scorecard document please follow this link WWF-UK Timber Scorecard.

If you are a timber and timber product supplier and would like to become FSC Certified or PEFC Certified, please fill in our enquiry form. We are industry experts and have skills expert knowledge in due diligence, chain of custody, 2nd party auditing and EUTR. You can find out more about the benefits of FSC and PEFC Chain of Custody by clicking this blog post link, FSC & PEFC Chain of Custody, or taking a look at our ‘Services’ section.

Launch of New CTI

CTI_logo2

Confederation of Timber Industries Launch

Yesterday, 10th June, was the launch of a new umbrella organisation, the Confederation of Timber Industries. Their aim is to represent the United Kingdom’s Timber supply chain from Forest to end of life recycling.

“Our mission is to speak as a single voice for the whole of the Timber Industry Supply Chain. We shall campaign to improve the business landscape to grow the use of timber and develop a vibrant and increasingly prosperous industry.”CTI Mission Statement

As we have mentioned in previous blog posts, here at Ligna we are in full support of this new organisation and are very much looking forward to what the future will bring. Our director Mike Greenland was among the very enthusiastic audience at the Building Centre yesterday for the launch of CTI.

The industry has long awaited an organisation like CTI, an umbrella to represent the Timber supply chain. CTI’s chief executive Dirk Vennix said, “It will be a long journey but I am ready for this challenge,” he added, “I will work hard to make wood a first choice product and expand our market”.

If you would like more information on Timber Supply Chain do not hesitate to contact us.