I run redd-monitor.org - a website that analyses and critiques REDD and other carbon trading schemes.
I've been an environmental activist and writer since the early 1990s. I have an MSc in Forestry and Land Use from Oxford University and have worked with several environmental and social rights NGOs.
Over the past weeks FSC has held a consultation on changing its policy on genetically engineered trees. For years FSC’s policy on genetically engineered trees has been confusing and weak. FSC is now trying to dismantle its already weak position by allowing field testing of GE trees.
The Global Justice Ecology Project has set up a petition opposing the proposed changes. You can sign on to the petition here: https://bit.ly/FSC-GE-tree-ban (the deadline is 14 December 2021).
Please sign the petition and share it widely!
Here is the text of the petition:
FSC: Protect forests from Genetically Engineered trees (open to groups & individuals)December 14, 2021
Kim Carstensen, Director General Forest Stewardship Council
Forest Stewardship Council (FSC): Protect our forests from Genetically Engineered tree threats
We, the undersigned, demand FSC reject GE trees.
Dear Mr. Carstensen,
We oppose Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) proposals to endorse field tests of genetically engineered (GE), also called genetically modified (GM) trees. The FSC must disassociate itself from any GE tree research activities and continue to clearly prohibit the commercial growing of GE trees.
The importance of FSC’s current prohibition on genetically engineered trees in FSC products is particularly critical given the recent Brazilian approval for commercial growing of a glyphosate-resistant GE eucalyptus tree, developed by the FSC-certified company Suzano. This new decision also shows the need to stop GE tree research by FSC members from moving ahead.
Genetically engineered trees threaten the future of our forests. They pose a wide range of possible environmental and social impacts that could increase over time as contamination spreads. FSC needs to continue to play a key role in preventing those impacts.
Genetically engineered trees are a threat to our collective future and have no place in FSC activities and FSC-certified products. The FSC needs to act to protect our forest ecosystems from GE trees rather than open the door to this dangerous experiment.
Demand for biomass, for example for the massive Drax power station in the UK, is driving forest destruction. Drax used to burn coal. Now it burns wood pellets. This week Channel 4 looked at the link between clearcutting in Estonia and increasing demand for biomass.
Earlier this month FSC-Watch wrote about a new report from Earthsight about illegal logging in Ukraine. Earthsights’ 18-month-long investigation revealed that IKEA is selling chairs made from beech wood that was illegally logged in the Ukrainian Carpathians. And the timber is certified by the Forest Stewardship Council.
Earthsight recently published the results of an 18-month long investigation into illegal logging in Ukraine. Earthsight’s report reveals that IKEA is selling chairs made from beech wood that was illegally logged in the Ukrainian Carpathians. IKEA products involved include the Terje chair and the Ingolf dining chair.
Australia suffered devastating fires between September 2019 and February 2020. About 7.4 million hectares of forest was burned, mainly in New South Wales and Victoria. The fires released 830 million tonnes of carbon dioxide – significantly more than the 530 million tonnes of CO2 that the country emits each year.
Hoarding of toilet paper started in early February 2020 in Hong Kong after consumers panicked themselves into believing that the coronavirus outbreak in China would disrupt supplies. Within days, toilet paper shelves were empty in the supermarkets. Social media helped fuel the hoarding, which quickly spread across the world from Sydney to London to Washington DC.
WCWC argued that FSC should dissociate from Roseburg because the company was attempting to profit from the town’s water supply, by selling it to a bottled water company called Crystal Geyser Alpine Spring.
By Water for Citizens of Weed, CA 27 February 2019
WEED, CALIFORNIA – Citizens of Weed, California filed a complaint today with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) after Oregon-based Roseburg Forest Products refused to stop its abusive tactics in a bid to privatize the community’s main source of drinking water.