International Workshop on Promoting Green Timber Procurement and Utilization to be held in Beijing

2015-09-08 20:30:00

The Beijing Forestry Society (BFS) will co-organize the International Workshop on Promoting Green Timber Procurement and Utilization with the Responsible Asia Forestry and Trade Program (RAFT) of The Nature Conservancy (TNC), the European Forest Institute (EFI) EU FLEGT Facility and the World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) in Beijing on October 9th, 2015.

The workshop will focus on the role of government and building developers in Beijing in promoting responsible timber procurement, as well as seeking cooperative opportunities among the international peers to learn from each other’s experience and foster Green Beijing development.

Background and Rationale:

The world’s forests remain under threat from illegal logging – an issue that has serious implications for tackling climate change and achieving sustainable development. In recent years, many measures have been taken worldwide to address illegal timber logging and associated trade. For example, the use of certification and supply chain controls has increased in the private sector; consumer-country governments (e.g. US, EU and Australia) have introduced legislation to prohibit imports of illegal timber; and producer governments have implemented extensive policy and governance reforms. Although China hasn’t imposing legal-binding legislation on stopping illegal timber trade, both the government and private sector are seeking effective ways to promote responsible consumption on timber products.

By the mid 2000s, the US and the EU (e.g. UK) developed public procurement policies for timber which required third party evidence of legal compliance or sustainability. Central government contracts account for 15–20% of all timber and timber product purchases in EU countries, and ensure those products from responsible sources.

Wood is a vital part of any green building. Using timber from sustainable forest management sources in buildings requires considerably less energy and therefore less carbon emissions – than nearly all other materials. In many parts of the world, builders are committed to reducing the environmental impact of buildings by encouraging energy-efficient, environmentally responsible choices in the design and building process.

Beijing, the capital of China, homes more than 25 million people. Developing a Greener Beijing is a mission of the Twelfth Five-year Beijing Development Plan (2011-2015). Promoting green building and strengthening the leading demonstration role of green public procurement are iterated in the plan. Introducing rigorous public procurement policies by government and code of conduct by building developers can certainly tackle illegal timber logging and associated trade.

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