The USGBC Tries Again to Draft Wood Certification Rules

Tuesday, 01 June 2010 00:00

The U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) requested comment recently on a ―fourth draft‖ of its proposed scheme to determine which forest certification schemes would qualify for points under its LEED system, and two of its sharpest critics already have declared— again, for sharply different reasons—that they don‘t like it.

The USGBC‘s proposal ―discriminates against North American forest and against almost all of the independent forest certification standards used in the United States and Canada,  ̳said one of those standard-setters, the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), in a June 15 statement. SFI argues that the proposed rules as written ―may result in the continued exclusion‖ from the list of potential certifiers not only its group but also the American Tree Farm System (ATFS), the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) Sustainable Forest Management Standard, and the Program for the Endorsement of Forest Certification Schemes (PEFC).

The National Lumber & Building Materials Dealers Association (NLBMDA) back‘s SFI‘s contention that the draft benchmarks are overly vague and subjective. ―NLBMDA‘s long-standing policy is that all major programs, including [the Forest Stewardship Council, or FSCJ, SFI, ATFS, CSA and PEFC, should be recognized for the LEED wood


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