Current topics

REDD- giving forests financial value
A new perspective for Precious Woods arrived with the launch of the REDD compensation system (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation). The aim is to reduce tropical forest destruction and deforestation by compensating developing countries financially for forest protection. REDD is a model based on the role of forests as carbon sinks in the global carbon cycle. It attributes a financial value to the carbon stored in the forests. The precise rules for the REDD-program have yet to be developed. There are complex questions concerning the protection of indigenous peoples’ rights as well as the governance of the projects. A first framework was created end of 2010 at the Climate Change Conference of Parties in Cancun (CoP 16). It regulates activities that go beyond the REDD-program as it includes sustainable forestry, forest protection as well as additional carbon sequestration measures, for which developing countries can be compensated. They are also referred to as REDD+ projects and exist since end of 2010. Precious Woods is assessing the possibility for REDD+ pilot projects in its FSC
®-certified forest areas in Gabon or Brazil.
 
EUTR/FLEGT – measures against illegal logging
Compared with the global trade volume FSC
®-certified tropical timber is still a niche product. Several countries have introduced measures to prevent illegal logging and trade with illegal timber. In 2011, the EU Parliament agreed to stop the import of illegal timber and derived products as of March 2013 (EU Timber Regulation – EUTR). The EUTR is a result of the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan, which was agreed in 2003. The US conservation legislation dating back to 1900 – the so-called Lacey Act – was amended and contains now a paragraph to prevent illegal logging. The Lacey Act requires for imports into the United States a plant and plant product import declaration, which has to contain the genus, species and country of origin of every plant product. The legality for tropical timber in terms of origin and trade is an essential prerequisite for the enforcement of the principles of sustainability, but not sufficient. FSC®- certification goes well beyond the issue of legality and also covers especially social and ecological criteria.