Canada’s largest industrial forest now FSC-certified

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Canada’s largest industrial forest now FSC-certified

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Cranbrook, British Columbia, Canada – Tembec, a large Canadian forest products company, Tembec’s Tree Farm License 14 forest, British Columbia, Canada.
© Tembec was awarded today an FSC certificate for its forest resource management practices in British Columbia.

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification — awarded by SmartWood, the FSC’s accredited certifier — is the world’s highest endorsement for environmentally and socially responsible forestry practices.

Tembec’s 142,000ha Tree Farm Licence 14, located in Parsons, B.C. — approximately 32km southwest of the town of Golden — is the largest industrial forest and the first in British Columbia to be certified under the rigorous FSC-BC standard. The forest is part of the traditional territory of the Ktunaxa Kinbasket First Nation in the Rocky Mountain trench flanked by the Purcell and Rocky Mountains. It borders the Columbia River and three distinctive protected areas: Glacier National Park; the Columbia Wetlands Wildlife Management Area; and the Bugaboo Alpine Recreation Area.

Tembec manages the forest under a Crown land tenure issued by the government of British Columbia.

In January 2001, Tembec and WWF Canada signed an historic accord to implement sustainable forest management.

“I am extremely pleased to report that we are steadily moving toward the achievement of our common goal,” said Tembec President and CEO, Frank Dottori.

“Certifying TFL 14 is a significant milestone for our British Columbia operations, bringing us closer to our goal of obtaining certification of all 40-million acres of Canadian forest under our management by the end of 2005.”

So far, Tembec has obtained the FSC certification for 3 million hectares including the TFL 14 certification.

“Once again, Tembec is showing strong leadership in its industrial sector across North America,” said Linda Coady, Vice President, Pacific Region, WWF Canada.

“This company is consistently trying to go above and beyond normal regulatory requirements to protect the environment and build positive relationships around forest stewardship.”

The FSC applies an inclusive approach to the certification process, which means key players such as forest users and directly affected groups were involved in the audit, providing input in the management of TFL 14.

“Our rigorous assessment process is designed to promote environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable forest management,” said Jim McCarthy, Executive Director of FSC Canada.

“Tembec’s certification of TFL 14 is a wonderful accomplishment and an example of how large industrial companies can manage their forest resources to the benefit of all involved.”

John Bergenske, Executive Director of the East Kootenay Environmental Society (EKES), appreciates FSC’s inclusive approach to sustainable forestry practices.

“We are pleased that our collaborative work with Tembec resulted in the protection of prime grizzly bear habitat, riparian areas and areas critical for both plant and animal species at risk. We look forward to further cooperation with Tembec as they seek FSC certification for the rest of their BC operations.”

Tembec can now benefit from the FSC certificate obtained for TFL 14 and other FSC-certified forests under its care in the marketing of products derived from these forests. Tembec’s list of FSC-certified products includes newsprint, paperboard, lumber, and hardwood flooring.

“With the FSC seal of approval, Tembec’s customers now have the extra assurance that the products they buy from us are the results of good forest management and practices,” said Tembec President Dottori.

Notes:

* The FSC is an independent, not-for-profit, non-government organization based in Bonn, Germany, providing standard setting, trademark assurance, and accreditation services for companies and organizations interested in responsible forestry. It was created in 1994 by environmental organizations such as WWF, Friends of the Earth, and Greenpeace; indigenous forest dwellers; professional foresters; big retailers such as Sweden’s IKEA and the UK’s B&Q; and large and small forest companies.

* Tembec is a leading integrated forest products company, well established in North America and France. With sales of approximately $4 billion and some 11,000 employees, it operates 50 market pulp, paper and wood-product manufacturing units, and produces chemicals from by-products of its pulping process. Tembec markets its products worldwide and has sales offices in Canada, the United States, the United Kingdom, Switzerland, China, Korea, Japan, and Chile.

* The Company also manages 16 million hectares of forest land in accordance with sustainable development principles and has committed to obtaining Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification for all forests under its care by the end of 2005. Tembec’s common shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol TBC.

For further information:
Linda Coady, Vice-President, Pacific Region
WWF Canada
Tel: +1 613-737-4702

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