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International - Forest Products Association of Canada

International - Forest Products Association of Canada

International - Forest Products Association of

Special Interest FeatureCanada and the U.n.YearInternationalCanadian leadership shows theworld the future of progressiveforestryHealthy, thriving forests are key to sustaining life on Earth.But each year, an area of forest roughly the size of CostaRica is destroyed, according to the United Nations. To helpmeet this challenge, the United Nations declared 2011 tobe International Year of Forests to raise awareness about sustainablymanaging, developing and conserving forests.Canada is at the forefront of sustainable forest management. Tefederal government is helping the forest sector become more competitiveand environmentally sustainable by investing in advancedtechnologies. Natural Resources Canada’s $100-million Investmentsin Forest Industry Transformation program supports projects that usenew technologies to create non-traditional high-value forest productsand renewable energy.From responsible consumption to model corporate stewardship ofresources, and the most advanced research and development in theworld, Canada leads the way in managing this renewable resource.Responsible retailMany Canadian retailers are supporting sustainable forestry. Homereno giant Rona won an award in 2009 from the Boreal LeadershipCouncil. Rona was recognized for its ambitious procurement policy.“It’s tough to see how we could stay in business without showing leadershipon sustainability,” says Éric Paradis, vice-president of merchandisingat Rona. Rona’s commitment to promoting sustainable forestrywas also on display in TV spots that aired during the Stanley Cupplayoffs. “We weren’t talking about rebates or putting things on sale.We ran the ads to help raise awareness,” Paradis says.Sustainable forest certificationWith virtually zero deforestation, more protected forest, and morethird-party certified forest than any other country, as well as some ofthe toughest forestry regulations in the world, Canada is second tonone when it comes to environmental stewardship.“We are recognized as a leader in sustainable forest management,which is exemplified by our record on certification,” says Tom Rosser,assistant deputy minister with the Canadian Forest Service. Certificationinvolves adhering to internationally recognized standards.Certification is validated and granted by independent third parties,which track the sustainability of wood products through the “chain ofcustody” from processing through to distribution. Canada accounts forover 42% of the world’s certified forests.“Te UN International Year of Forests provides an opportunity toraise awareness about certification and sustainable forestry,” Rossersays. He points to how Canada’s Model Forest Program has enjoyedconsiderable success in promoting sustainable forestry. A model forestis an area where partners ranging from local farmers to national poli-

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