More Room for Green Timber Procurement and Utilization in Beijing

2015-11-24 11:25:00

The International Workshop on Promoting Green Timber Procurement and Utilization in Beijing was co-organized by the Beijing Forestry Society (BFS), The Nature Conservancy (TNC) – Responsible Asia Forestry and Trade (RAFT) Program, European Forest Institute (EFI) EU FLEGT Facility, and World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF), in Beijing from October 8th to 9th of 2015. Over 60 participants from from China, the Netherlands and the USA gathered to share and discuss best practices and challenges regarding green timber procurement and utilization in China, North America and Europe.

The one day indoor workshop on the 9th was designed to: 1) integrate resources and expertise of relevant Chinese and international institutions: 2) build a platform for dialogue and exchanges related to green timber procurement and utilization: and 3) discuss the possibility of including green timber and wood products in public procurement policies and in green building standards in China, especially in Beijing.

A field visit to the Beijing Badaling National Forest Park was organized for international participants and a few participants from Beijing on October 8th. The park covers an area of nearly 3,000 hectares and is located in Beijing’s northwest county of Yanqing, close to the world-famous Badaling Great Wall. It is also the first non-commercial forest that received FSC forest management certification in China. Participants visited the Beijing Badaling Forest Experience Center which incorporates many green building ideas in architecture and a UPS Foundation sponsored wooden cabin which is used for environmental education activities.

A general consensus was reached during the workshop, that only when government agencies and enterprises effectively implement sound green timber consumption policies and when market incentives are provided, can deforestation and forest degradation be ultimately addressed. Representatives from some government agencies, enterprises and research institutes emphasized the importance of imposing a higher market access threshold on the timber market; Implementation of green procurement policies will achieve sustainable forest management through taking advantage of the government’s authority in environmental regulation as well as through private sector’s approaches to create market niches for responsible timber consumption.

During the workshop, experts proposed specific suggestions on how to develop green timber procurement policies and how to promote green and energy-saving buildings in Beijing. They suggested that we should take advantage of the 2019 International Horticultural Exposition and the 2022 Winter Olympic Games to be held in Beijing, as well as Beijing government’s new initiatives on Low-carbon Pilot City Development and Green Beijing Development to accelerate public green timber procurement policy making.

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