AHEC launches website to show sustainability of American hardwoods
Featuring extensive data gathered by the US Forest Service, the website shows how swiftly wood used for a variety of projects regrows naturally in American forests.
Supported by environmental consultants ThinkStep, AHEC aims to promote a better understanding of the true environmental benefits of using American hardwoods in design and manufacture.
The platform, alongside the AHEC website, will provide environmentally concerned architects, developers and manufacturers useful information to help them select the most suitable materials for their projects.
In some instances the timber used in construction and design will have taken just seconds to grow such is the wealth of resource available. Examples shown on the site include a spectacular M.C. Esher-inspired staircase that would take just two minutes to replace, a design-savvy shed (a mere 14 seconds), a wooden workspace (five seconds), decking (25 seconds) and even a bespoke pencil sharpener (0.02 seconds).
Find out more on www.growninseconds.org.
90% of timber entering the UK is certified, TTF Due Diligence Report shows
The Timber Trade Federation (TTF) has recently published its Annual Responsible Sourcing Report.
The report analysed data from 159 companies, covering around 76% of the total volume of timber and logs consumed in the UK in 2014. The top line findings are that little has changed in terms of the exposure to risk the UK faces when it comes to illegal logging, with around 90% of all products certified to FSC/ PEFC.
The level of certified purchases however has regressed slightly as some companies seem to now be using their due diligence systems to mitigate risk ahead of buying certified product.
A positive note is that the proportion of certified timber remained similar to previous years even though the volume of timber reported for 2014 was substantially higher.
"The work that the TTF and its members have done in this area - renamed in 2014 as the Responsible Purchasing Process - has delivered measurable benefits to Members’ businesses and, by definition, to the timber supply chain", said outgoing TTF Chief Executive David Lennan. "Importantly, it has provided a framework for companies to provide the evidence and data to show that they are increasingly buying from sources that are more formally and at a minimum, legally managed."
Read the Due Diligence Report here.
Spanish Government approves decree to implement EUTR and FLEGT
The Spanish Council of Ministers has recently approved a royal decree aiming to ensure the legality of timber products trade.
The new standards create a framework for the implementation in Spain of two EU regulations: FLEGT (Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade) and EUTR (European Union Timber Regulation).
Established in 2003 and based on bilateral agreements between States, FLEGT ensures that wood products entering the EU market come from sustainably managed forests.
On the other hand, EUTR, launched in 2013, aims to tackle illegal logging prohibiting to place illegally harvested timber and timber products on the EU market. It also forces trade companies and agents to track timber products from the origin evaluating the risk of illegal logging.
Back in October, the European Court of Auditors (the Court) openly underlined delays in the implementation of FLEGT and EUTR in four member countries: Spain, Greece, Romania and Hungary.
BSW Timber Group achieves Grown in Britain license
Grown in Britain has granted its licence to BSW Timber Group. By achieving their Grown in Britain licence, it will allow BSW Timber group to use the Grown in Britain trademark which can now be applied to nearly 1 million tonnes of timber from the company.
The certification scheme promotes the timber supply chain integrity assuring that the wood has been grown in the UK in accordance with the UK Government Timber Procurement Policy. It covers all types of wood – soft and hard – just as long as it was grown in the UK.
Commenting on BSW Timber’s commitment to sourcing locally supplied timber, Grown in Britain chief executive, Dougal Driver, said: “The leadership shown by BSW to secure a Grown in Britain licence is fantastic news for the homegrown sector and gives us a terrific boost as we aim to create a sustainable future for our wonderful woods and forests. Buyers can now look for the Grown in Britain logo in depots and stores and back British business and enhance our woods and forests at the same time.”