There’s a growing realisation in the European timber sector, the wider marketplace and among political decision makers that maintaining and building a viable market for sustainably sourced tropical timber is essential for long-term forest protection. Earnings from the sale of the timber provide the essential underpinning for the establishment and spread of sustainable forest management (SFM).
That’s why the European Sustainable Tropical Timber Coalition (STTC) was established; to increase awareness of the broader environmental and social benefits of certified sustainably sourced tropical timber, the technical and performance properties of different species, including, lesser-used varieties and, critically for their sales success, their availability. The ultimate aim is to reverse the downward trend in the European tropical timber market and contribute to the effort to halt and eventually reverse global forest loss.
To come up with practical strategies for achieving this, the STTC is bringing together a like-minded group comprising businesses, from importers and traders, to end users and retailers, plus representatives of NGOs and local and central government. It is already making headway and winning prominent backing. The supporters to date are convinced of the STTC’s positive potential.
Kingfisher “Kingfisher aims to achieve 100% responsibly sourced timber and paper in all its product and operations by 2020,” said Jamie Micah Lawrence – Senior Sustainability Advisor to international home improvement giant Kingfisher. “The STTC’s aim to increase the EU market share of sustainably sourced tropical timber through collaborative, cross-industry commitment to favour certified and verified timber products is welcomed and will no doubt help Kingfisher achieve its own ambition to be a ‘Net Positive’ business.”
European Timber Trade Federation “Trade in sustainably sourcedproduced timber and other forest products is a vital precondition for long-term sustainable forestry,” said European Timber Trade Federation (ETTF) Secretary General, André de Boer. “The STTC shares the our ultimate goal of keeping the forests alive and the ETTF welcomes the opportunity to play an active part.”
PontMeyer “It’s great the European STTC is acting to increase demand for tropical timber from sustainably managed forests,” said Anne Schouten, chief executive of Dutch-based timber and builders merchant PontMeyer. “PontMeyer is dedicated to purchase, promote and sell sustainably sourced tropical timber. Supply and demand can make this timber mainstream. It’s the only way to fight deforestation successfully and we’re glad to contribute.”