Submitted by: Royal Dutch Shell plc
Posted: Jan 23, 2001 – 11:00 PM EST
Shell Forestry has been awarded Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification for its 159,000 hectares of forests in Latin America.
The FSC certification was granted by the auditors SGS-Qualifor who managed a group of independent experts in areas of forestry, social and environmental sciences. The comprehensive assessment process involved interviews with staff, community and environmental groups and on-site forestry performance inspections.
Shell Forestry Chief Operating Officer, Deric Quaile, said: “Obtaining the FSC certification for the management of our forests is a great tribute to our staff and their hard work. It is not only a “green label”, but also a recognition of our strong reputation in forest technology, health, safety and environment, and commitment to the process of sustainable development. The FSC certification and its on-product “green label” give us the opportunity to show the commercial benefits of investing in environmental conservation. Producing the forest products that come with the FSC label is a tangible demonstration of our contribution to environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable management in forestry.”
The Forest Stewardship Council is an independent international non-profit organisation established in 1993 and based in Mexico. The goal of the organisation is to promote environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable management of the world’s forests, by establishing and promoting a worldwide standard of recognised and respected principles of forest management.
The FSC certification acts as a guarantee that the timber products the customer is buying are from a well-managed source. Products are distinguished by an FSC logo shown on the goods. An FSC certificate means that the impact on the environment by the organisation’s activities has been independently assessed and found to comply with the FSC principles and criteria.
The FSC offers one pathway to certification through its standards and processes. However there are many alternative systems e.g., the Finnish Forest Certification, Pan European Forest Certification, Canadian Standards Organisation, American Tree Farm System etc. Shell selected FSC because it meets the requirements of our international customer base and complies with our need for an independent, impartial and transparent process.
Currently there is wide discussion of some form of Mutual Recognition or other means to harmonise or rationalise certification systems and Shell is actively engaged in this process through the forestry working group of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development.
The Shell Forestry companies covered are: Compañía Argentina de Petróleo S.A., in Argentina; Forestal y Agrícola Monte Aguila S.A., in Chile; Forestal Yguazú S.R.L., in Paraguay; and Forestal Oriental S.A., in Uruguay.
As from January 2001 all Shell Forestry products from Latin America will be sold under the FSC umbrella.
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