During COP 15 in Montreal, Canada, FSC announced the launch of an initiative to fast-track Biodiversity Assessments in FSC-certified forests, taking a further step in demonstrating the value of forest biodiversity and contributing to the delivery of the post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework.
As the pioneer of the notion of High Conservation Values, FSC certification benefits biodiversity by protecting rare and threatened species and their habitats as required by FSC standards. However, data about this impact is not systematically available. In fact, global biodiversity data is insufficient, not comparable, and most importantly, does not aim to capture the true value of nature in society.
For this reason, FSC will work with partners including IKEA, Tetra Pak, Procter & Gamble, Kingfisher, SCA, Essity, and WWF International, as well as knowledge and technology partners, to understand how it can provide better biodiversity data about FSC certified forests and create a framework for companies to make claims on biodiversity related to their FSC-certified products.
Eighty per cent of global terrestrial biodiversity is found in the world’s forests. This initiative could make harmonized tools and metrics available for FSC certificate holders, governments, businesses, and other actors to deliver on several international targets.
This initiative will build on FSC’s unique model and decades of experience, supporting the diversification of forest solutions, strengthening FSC’s role as the most credible validation of forest stewardship, and making FSC an attractive solution to different types of forest management, including community lands, conservation, and protected areas.
A Two-Phased Approach
The initiative will have two phases towards the understanding of the biodiversity impacts of FSC certification:
- Work Package 1 aims to understand current monitoring efforts and evaluate available data to assess biodiversity in FSC-certified forests, connecting to FSC’s forward-looking efforts on Ecosystem Services Claims and outcome-oriented standards.
- Work Package 2 aims to enhance the monitoring framework for forest biodiversity supporting the assessment and communication of credible claims by FSC stakeholders, including certificate holders.
Hear the full announcement live from COP15 here.