In an effort to reform logging practices in Canada’s 1.4 billion acre boreal forest, environmentalists are asking consumer products manufacturers and retailers to buy only wood, pulp and paper from logging companies certified as sustainable extractors.
As reported in E‘s January 2004 feature article “Oh, Canada!” (http://www.emagazine.com/view/?1184), the boreal forest is one of the most diverse and fragile environments in all of the world’s northern latitudes. Besides protecting hundreds of threatened species, its thick forest cover helps sequester carbon, which in turn slows the onset of global warming.
But despite the forest’s environmental value, the Canadian government has leased almost half of the region to the logging industry in order to boost timber sales.
Environmental groups, including Greenpeace, the Natural Resources Defense Council and the Rainforest Action Network, are hoping that economic pressure on the purchasers of wood and wood products will force logging companies to adopt more sustainable practices, as laid out by the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC), an environmental auditing association for the timber industry.