Brighton and Hove City Council sign up to WWF pledge

Brighton and Hove City Council sign up to WWF pledgeBrighton and Hove City Council have pledged to make sure that all of the timber products they buy come from entirely legal sources.

The WWF pledge that the authority signed up to has three levels – gold, silver and bronze, and the council has signed the gold WWF badge for wood procurement.

The WWF initiative, part of the ‘What Wood You Choose?’ campaign, asked them to implement a policy whereby they only bought products like furniture, fencing and doors, from certified sources such as FSC (Forest Stewardship Council).

Uncertified wood products could be contributing to illegal logging, habitat loss for species and it could also threaten the livelihood and wellbeing of communities who rely on the forests.

By signing up to the gold pledge, the council must ensure that staff only buy recycled, certified or sustainable and legal timber products across all their departments. In a recent WWF report on all 433 UK local authorities’ timber procurement policies, Brighton & Hove City Council achieved the highest score in the country.

Councillor Jason Kitcat, Cabinet Member for Finance and Central Services, said:“Brighton & Hove City Council aims to create a more sustainable city and be one of the best performing councils in England in this regard- that’s why we’ve made a pledge with WWF to achieve the Gold standard for procurement of timber and wood-derived products.

“By adopting the WWF’s gold pledge, the council will be leading the way in safeguarding sustainable forestry and combating illegal logging, and so protecting our environment for future generations.

Colin Butfield, head of campaigns at WWF-UK, added: “It is great news that Brighton City Council has signed up to the gold pledge. By gaining the highest score in our recent report they have already shown they are taking steps to make sure that everything they buy that derives from wood is not harming species and people in parts of the world where illegal logging is devastating the environment.”

Currently, the UK is the third highest importer of products made from illegal timber in Europe after Germany and Italy. This is the equivalent to fill just over 15 Royal Albert Halls. But from March next year, the EU Timber Regulation will ban illegally harvested timber and timber products from the UK.

Despite the upcoming introduction of legislation to halt the import of illegally sourced wood products, more than half of local authorities don’t have a legal and sustainable timber procurement policy WWF research shows that local authorities that don’t know where timber they use for doors, flooring and even paper comes from could be supporting the illegal and unsustainable timber trade.

Posted by on Apr 4th, 2012 and filed under Featured Content, News, Politics. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response by filling following comment form or trackback to this entry from your site

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