Well-managed, FSC certified forests help protect plant species, wildlife, and the increasingly endangered North American manufacturing job.
The peregrine falcon, the red wolf and the eastern puma. The alkali buttercup, the Canadian gooseberry and the red trillium. These are just some of the North American animal, bird and plant species currently on the threatened or endangered list. The good news is that everyone can play a role in protecting these and other precious flora and fauna by adopting responsible forest management practices or supporting companies that do. Domtar, with its commitment to sustainability, actively contributes to safeguarding our natural heritage while helping protect an equally important and dwindling resource – the U.S. and Canadian manufacturing job.
There are currently over two million people working in the forest products paper and printing industries in North America.
These jobs rely on a healthy, thriving forest, one that will be able to continue providing trees for raw material to make paper for years to come. But for this to happen, we must all be accountable for the actions we take as we benefit from the assets the forest has to offer. In other words, we have to give back if we are to continue getting.
The best way to accomplish this is by adopting strict standards for sustainable forest management, standards that are enforced by internationally-recognized third parties whose seal of approval guarantees that a product has been produced responsibly. The Forest Stewardship Council™ (FSC®), the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® and the Canadian Standards Association are three of the most respected organizations in the business in North America. Whenever possible, Domtar favors certification to FSC, due to its inclusive mandate, which involves striking a balance amongst environmental, social and commercial interests in a forest.
FSC certified forests are evaluated against 10 principles and 57 criteria for responsible forest management. Among other things, they ensure that waterways and wildlife habitat and species are protected, and high conservation value forests that contain biodiversity values and rare or threatened ecosystems are preserved.1 This commitment to safeguarding forest habitats and ecosystems is one of the reasons the FSC has garnered the support of leading environmental organizations and Domtar is applauded by the Rainforest Alliance and the World Wildlife Fund (WWF).
It is also thanks to the work of the FSC, in collaboration with the forest products industry, forest owners and governments, that nearly 150 million acres of forest in North America are being responsibly managed according to the strictest standards in the world2. Initiatives like third-party certification and other conservation projects have, in fact, helped keep North American’s forests thriving. According to the experts, the overall area of forestland today in the United States is nearly identical to what it was over a century ago.3 That’s because, in responsibly managed forests, for every tree harvested, several more are replanted or naturally regenerated in its place. And, according to Natural Resources Canada, planting and seeding are a reliable means of regenerating forests disturbed by harvesting or other factors when advanced or natural regeneration are not options for a particular site.4
The forest is a natural treasure to be sure. But it is also an economic one, source of millions of jobs and an important driver of social progress. Its long-term sustainability is in all of our interests, and by being responsible users, we can all continue to enjoy its benefits.
1 Principles and Criteria - www.fsc.org
2 Facts and Figures - www.fsc.org
3 New U.S. Forest Service Data Reveals Positive Gains - USDA Forest Service
4 National Resources Canada - Ecosystem, Condition and Productivity