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Certification and Governance: Harmonization in the FSC George Hoberg Forest Resource Management University of British Columbia.

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Presentation on theme: "Certification and Governance: Harmonization in the FSC George Hoberg Forest Resource Management University of British Columbia."— Presentation transcript:

1 Certification and Governance: Harmonization in the FSC George Hoberg Forest Resource Management University of British Columbia

2 Agenda Harmonization – overviewHarmonization – overview FSC institutional structureFSC institutional structure FSC governance issuesFSC governance issues FSC harmonization policyFSC harmonization policy Issue of CostsIssue of Costs Case I: Canadian MaritimesCase I: Canadian Maritimes Case II: US RockiesCase II: US Rockies Case III: BCCase III: BC

3 Harmonization - Definition Harmonization: the process of creating consistency across regional standards within the FSCHarmonization: the process of creating consistency across regional standards within the FSC Mutual Recognition: the effort to increase consistency across certification schemes (e.g., FSC and SFI)Mutual Recognition: the effort to increase consistency across certification schemes (e.g., FSC and SFI)

4 Harmonization The Challenge Consistency with recognized global standard of stewardship Accommodating tremendous diversity of ecological, social, and economic conditions

5 Institutional Structure Certifying bodies FSC International National Bodies Regional standards Forests

6 FSC Governance Issues Key Question: How much precision at which level?Key Question: How much precision at which level? Not a Federation: division of powers such that lower levels have some kind of activities on which it makes final decisions (Riker)Not a Federation: division of powers such that lower levels have some kind of activities on which it makes final decisions (Riker) FSC:FSC: –general guidance in P&C –Leave details to regional process –But FSC International always makes final decision

7 Discretion: Case of Water Principle 6:Forest management shall conserve biological diversity and its associated values, water resources, soils, and unique and fragile ecosystems and landscapes, and, by so doing, maintain the ecological functions and the integrity of the forest.Principle 6:Forest management shall conserve biological diversity and its associated values, water resources, soils, and unique and fragile ecosystems and landscapes, and, by so doing, maintain the ecological functions and the integrity of the forest. 6.6: requires written guidelines to “protect water resources”6.6: requires written guidelines to “protect water resources”

8 Harmonization - Goal for the regional standards to provide a consistent interpretation of the P and C world-wide. The goal of the FSC is to promote environmentally responsible, socially beneficial and economically viable management of the world's forests, by establishing a worldwide standard of recognized and respected principles of Forest Stewardship preamble to the FSC criteria and indictors

9 FSC International Policy National Initiative Manual (NIM)National Initiative Manual (NIM) "all possible efforts are made to achieve harmonization during the standards drafting process" (NIM )

10 FSC International Policy (cont) National Initiative Manual (NIM) National Initiative Manual (NIM) The Board of Directors must be satisfied that the standard document is compatible with those of similar and/or neighbouring regions. Discrepancies must be justified on the basis of differing ecological, social or economic conditions. The Working Group must submit (a) a list of existing regional, national and local standards that were analysed and (b) the feedback on the standard obtained by the Working Group / Standards Writing Group from appropriate other Working Groups. Note, FSC generally expects that standards will be harmonised in an upwards rather than downwards manner.

11 The issue of costs Desirable to avoid unjustified discrimination between forest products being certified according to different regional standardsDesirable to avoid unjustified discrimination between forest products being certified according to different regional standards Environmentalists fear a justification to water down standardsEnvironmentalists fear a justification to water down standards not officially in FSC policy documentsnot officially in FSC policy documents

12 Elaboration of 3 core values 1. Environmentally appropriate forest management ensures that the harvest of timber and non-timber products maintains the forest's biodiversity, productivity, and ecological processes. 2. Socially beneficial forest management helps both local people and society at large to enjoy long term benefits and also provides strong incentives to local people to sustain the forest resources and adhere to long-term management plans. 3. Economically viable forest management means that forest operations are structured and managed so as to be sufficiently profitable, without generating financial profit at the expense of the forest resource, the ecosystem, or affected communities. preamble to the FSC criteria and indictors

13 Proposed cost standard the incremental costs (above and beyond existing costs faced by producers) of FSC certification should be comparable, unless cost differentials can be justified on the basis of differing ecological, social, or economic conditions.the incremental costs (above and beyond existing costs faced by producers) of FSC certification should be comparable, unless cost differentials can be justified on the basis of differing ecological, social, or economic conditions. In particular, consideration of costs needs to be placed in the context of the overall mission statement that appears to give priority to ecological objectives.In particular, consideration of costs needs to be placed in the context of the overall mission statement that appears to give priority to ecological objectives.

14 Case I: Canadian Maritimes Concern over chemicalsConcern over chemicals FSC 6.6: discourages but does not banFSC 6.6: discourages but does not ban Initial regional std: chemicals prohibitedInitial regional std: chemicals prohibited FSC Canada softens to require phaseoutFSC Canada softens to require phaseout FSC Int endorses standard, but requires chemical section to be redrawn to be more consistent with other regionsFSC Int endorses standard, but requires chemical section to be redrawn to be more consistent with other regions US NE std: minimal, controlled useUS NE std: minimal, controlled use Major controversyMajor controversy

15 Case II: US Rocky Mountains Initially, separate regional standards developedInitially, separate regional standards developed Early 2000, FSC-US establishes national standards committee to develop “national indicators”Early 2000, FSC-US establishes national standards committee to develop “national indicators” Sept 01: FSC-Int approves standard, subject to certain conditionsSept 01: FSC-Int approves standard, subject to certain conditions –Congratulates committee on harmonization with US –Criticism for not harmonizing with Canada (given 6 months to do this)

16 Case III: BC Current working on DIIICurrent working on DIII Harmonization has been a big issue: industry hoped it would soften standardHarmonization has been a big issue: industry hoped it would soften standard Engos resistant to consideration of costsEngos resistant to consideration of costs Procedurally difficult because US regional groups not cooperatingProcedurally difficult because US regional groups not cooperating

17 Reflections on FSC Governance Challenging issues, severely limited resourcesChallenging issues, severely limited resources Harmonization critical to legitimacyHarmonization critical to legitimacy Important issues and procedures not yet addressedImportant issues and procedures not yet addressed


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