Just the Facts:
Making Informed Decisions

Informed decisions are part of life and business. Understanding the social andecological context in which we operate and make decisions is vital for developing appropriate business strategies. To develop and implement an environmentally sound wood and paper purchasing policy, it is necessary to have a solid grounding in the ecological and social context of forests and forest dependant communities globally. This helps executive teams with making the commitment to develop such policies and practices as well as helping staff to feel committed to this initiative and the socially responsible company they work with.


Forest Ecology Facts

  • Only 20% of the world's original ancient forests remain intact (World Resources Institute, 1997)
  • Most of the world's remaining frontier forests are located in Canada, Brazil and Russia (World Resources Institute, 1997).
  • The world's ancient forests are vital for species habitat, water regulation, bio-diversity and climate regulation.

 

BC's temperate rainforests

  • Temperate forests are the most endangered forest type on the planet (World Resources Institute, 1997)
  • Temperate rainforests only ever covered 0.2% of the world's land surface. (Ecotrust & Conservation International, 1992)
  • BC is home to a quarter of the world's remaining ancient temperate rainforests(World Resources Institute, 1997)
  • One out of eight animal species in BC is at risk of extinction, according to the BC Ministry of Environment . Logging was identified as one of the primary contributing causes.(BC Ministry of Environment, State of the Environment Report 2000)

Brazil's tropical rainforests

  • Between 1500-1970, only 1% of the Amazon's tropical rainforests was logged
  • 6% of the Brazilian Amazon's was deforested between 1980-1990.(World Resources Institute 1998-1999)
  • The Amazon's tropical rainforest is home to over 30,000 species of plant life, including many important medicinals

Boreal forests of Nothern Canada and Russia

  • Canada is home to a third of the world's remaining boreal forests, they cover 35% of Canada's land mass (Natural Resources Canada/Canadian Geographic, 1999).
  • Boreal forests account for a quarter of the world's remaining closed canopy forests (Natural Resources Canada/Canadian Geographic, 1999)


Social Context

  • BC generates one fifth the jobs that Washington State does and one tenth of the jobs that Switzerland for the same amount of wood cut, primarily due to mechanization, minimal processing and raw log exports.
  • The world's ancient forests are home to many of the world's indigenous peoples.
  • Paper consumption increased 86% globally between 1961 and 1994. It is expected to double again in the next 15 years.

What the experts are calling for
The World Commission on Forests and Sustainable Development called for a halt to the further destruction or degradation of the world's remaining primary forests (World Commission on Forests and Sustainable Development, 1999)

Public Support
There is very strong public support for companies that care for the environment.