‘Sustainable’ timber schemes named by CPET

Only four forestry certification schemes can ensure the legality and sustainability of timber, says a report by the Central Point of Expertise on Timber (CPET) published late last year.

CPET, which advises the government on sustainable timber procurement, also ruled out products containing a mixture of certified and uncertified material, unless the certified fraction exceeds 70%. This is because none of the schemes were rigorous enough to ensure uncertified material is from sustainable sources, it says.

The review comes ahead of a shift in policy. Currently, all central government departments must "actively seek" legal and sustainable timber. But from 1 April 2009, only products from independently verified legal and sustainable sources or from a licensed Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade partner can be bought. The last review was carried out in 2006 (ENDS Report 377, p 25).

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