Taking the sustainable timber message to EcoProcura

FSC Ecoprocura study tour

The beneficial impacts of using sustainably sourced tropical timber were news to some delegates at the latest EcoProcura Conference in Nijmegen, according to FSC Netherlands.

The EcoProcura event promotes exchange and dialogue among purchasers from government, plus suppliers and other policy makers on strategies and solutions for sustainable and innovative procurement. This year’s event attracted over 400 delegates from around the world, with the plenary programme ranging from such diverse topics as buying green electricity and sustainable finance, to supporting local communities through social procurement programmes and the purchasing policies of several major European cities.

While sustainable timber and forestry was not covered in the plenary sessions, FSC Netherlands and FSC International partnered the conference and had a booth. They also organised ‘market lounge’ presentations of the FSC IMPACT tool for calculating the environmental benefits of using certified timber in the building sector, plus a study tour on the use of certified timber in construction.

“So we were quite visible during the event,” said Mark Kemna of FSC Netherlands.

“As a co-sponsor of EcoProcura, FSC was also mentioned by main organiser and STTC partner ICLEI as an important partner for cities in sustainable tropical procurement,” added FSC Chief Advocacy Officer John Hontelez. “I have the impression that those taking part take certification as a given, be it that they do not specifically focus on tropical timber, or even do not trust verified sustainable tropical timber entirely.”

Mr Kemna added that “most participants we spoke to were very positive about FSC and the role it can play in sustainable procurement. Although for a good part of them, learning about the wider positive effects of the use of certified tropical timber was an eye opener.”