Newsletter Stories

Saturday, 01 March 2003
No Small Achievement

From the President

FSC-US has a reason to celebrate. After years of work by over one hundred foresters, environmentalists, social and business leaders, we now have a complete set of regional standards that, once approved by FSC International, will allow certifications to be carried out in a manner that takes into account the many distinctions between forest ecosystems in the United States. This is no small achievement. While many countries in the FSC system can utilize one national standard, the contiguous 48 U.S. states possess no fewer than nine biogeographic regions in terms of forest types. Thus, FSC U.S. coordinated the drafting of nine regional standards for the Northeast, Southeast, Appalachian, Lakes States, Mississippi Alluvial Valley, Ozark-Ouachita, Rocky Mountain, Pacific Coast, and Southwest.

For this achievement, we must offer a hearty congratulations for a job well done to FSC U.S. foresters Bill Wilkinson, Ben Addlestone, and Greg Blomstrom, and Regional Standards Coordinators Phil Guillery (IATP), Jeff Stringer (University of KY), John McNulty (Seven Islands Land Co.), Rob Bryan (Maine Audubon Society), Kent Landrum, Nick Brown, Steve Thompson (NPCA), Steve Taranto (Forest Management Trust), and Steve Harrington (Forest Trust). They led the work that has created the world’s “benchmark" standards for the conservation of working forests. Thousands of hours went into this process.

We must not forget that at its essence the FSC remains a market mechanism designed to reward good forest practices. Therefore it is important that we continue to build a market for FSC products that is vigorous and sustainable.

Right now, the marketplace for FSC-certified wood and wood products must be expanded, both on the supply and demand sides. Therefore, FSC-U.S. plans to aggressively market its brand regionally and nationally—an activity that we believe will create “market pull" for FSC products already in the pipeline and reap benefits for all certificate holders.

In the long term, FSC-U.S. will fundamentally reorient market initiatives to create real demand based on a clear understanding of sustainable forest management and the rewards for such responsible forestry.

To do this we will need your input and involvement. We need to hear from you regarding what marketing assistance you need and what marketing ideas you can provide to make the FSC system work. We are eager to work with you.