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Steve Nix

Forest Sustainability and Certification

By January 30, 2014

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Sustained Forest

The terms sustainable forest and sustained yield comes to us from foresters of the 18th and 19th century in Europe. At the time, much of Europe was being deforested and foresters became increasingly concerned since products made from wood was one of the driving forces in the European economy.

Modern efforts to define sustainable forest management have met with confusion and argument. A debate over criteria and indicators to be used to measure forest sustainability is at the heart of the issue. Any attempt to define sustainability in a sentence, or a paragraph, or even several pages can be limiting. I try to condense it down.

Forest certification is based on, and demands the forest owner to practice, the principles of sustainability.

A worldwide leader in the certification effort is the Forest Stewardship Council who has developed widely accepted sustainable forest principles. Another forest certification organization, called Sustainable Forest Initiative, is a collection of sustainable forestry schemes developed to achieve a much broader practice of sustainable forestry throughout the United States without higher cost to the consumer.


January 18, 2010 at 4:10 am
(1) mike house says:

this should be taught in the 6th grade to our youth and contest to win something for essay turned or taught through jr.achivement class –our youth do not understand responsible logging —well most adults do not understand —trees grow jobs and we need both jobs and trees

January 18, 2010 at 2:23 pm
(2) Norris says:

It is not sustainable to keep increasing the national debt to fund public forestry and other programs that due not contribute to the creation of wealth. Funding forest management through funds derived from the forest, such as timber sales, recreation fees, sale of other products, etc. would be economically sustainable. That would still require the managers to sustain those marketable values of the forest through wise use (conservation), but preservation is not sustainable.

January 19, 2010 at 11:32 am
(3) Tom says:

Wood is a renewable resource that should be utilized. Believe the national forests should be utilized for timber production at a rate just below what is needed for reproduction with certain areas set aside for wildlife, etc.

January 17, 2011 at 4:19 am
(4) Thorsten Arndt says:

Steve, you may want to reference the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC). It’s the world’s largest forest certification system and the certification system of choice for small- and family- forest owners.

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