Caring for our forests globally
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Mission & Vision

"We are committed to conserving forests and their invaluable biodiversity, and the communities and families that own, work, and live in and around forests."

This statement by PEFC Chairman William Street highlights our dedication to safeguarding the world's forests. Our vision is of "a world in which people manage forests sustainably". We are working to make this vision a reality through our mission which is "to give society confidence that people manage forests sustainably".

forestForests are among the most biodiverse and valuable ecosystems on the planet. They provide a full range of ecosystem services including:

Without forests, many of these services would be completely lost, while many of the species which depend on forests would also suffer or disappear.

An estimated 1.6 billion people worldwide are believed to depend on forests and the services they provide for their livelihoods. Importantly, forestry and related industry sectors account for a significant share of the global economy.

Yet, forests are among the most vulnerable ecosystems. Threats to forests and forests landscapes include land conversion for agriculture and mining, development and urban expansion, unsustainable forestry practices and illegal logging. If forests are to continue to deliver the full range of benefits that people and nature depend on, they need to be conserved and managed sustainably. PEFC is committed to encouraging sustainable management of forests.

PEFC bases its understanding of Sustainable Forest Management (SFM) on the definition adopted by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and originally developed by Forest Europe, which defines SFM as:

"The stewardship and use of forests and forest lands in a way, and at a rate, that maintains their biodiversity, productivity, regeneration capacity, vitality and their potential to fulfil, now and in the future, relevant ecological, economic and social functions, at local, national, and global levels, and that does not cause damage to other ecosystems."

Under this definition, to achieve sustainability, forest management practices must result in outcomes that are

  • economically viable
  • ecologically sound, and
  • socially just.

These three pillars cannot be divided, compartmentalized, or addressed individually. They are a unified whole. Without all three, forests cannot be protected, family foresters cannot thrive, forest-dependent communities cannot exist, illegal logging will not pefc-pelletsbe abated, and carbon emissions will not be mitigated.

Forest certification provides a mechanism to address these and ensure that wood and wood-based products reaching the marketplace have been sourced from sustainably managed forests.

PEFC works to implement its mission by encouraging forest certification.

However, crucially, PEFC recognizes that the diversity of forests and of the communities that depend upon them for their livelihoods means that a "one-size-fits-all" standard is not the solution.

Furthermore, unless all concerned stakeholders are involved in sustainable management policy formulation and implementation, sustainable forest management cannot be achieved.

PEFC therefore collaborates with national forest certification systems tailored to local conditions and involving a wide range of stakeholders to encourage the delivery of sustainably sourced products to the marketplace.

Core Values

"To give society confidence that people manage forests sustainably."

  1. Respect for all forest ownership structures, and the social, cultural, environmental and economic values they provide.
  2. Respect for the social infrastructures of forest based communities.
  3. Belief in co-operation, openness and transparency.
  4. Respect for the tenets of federalism.
  5. Belief in free and fair market systems.
  6. Belief in multi-stakeholder participation.
  7. Commitment to excellence and continuous improvement.

"A world in which people manage forests sustainably."

  1. Accept when others are right and admit when we are wrong.
  2. Build alliances around common causes.
  3. Recognise the importance of economic, social and environmental realities.
  4. Respect intergovernmental and other international processes.
  5. Respect relationships within the PEFC community.
  6. Act with honesty and integrity.
  7. Provide value for our members.
statutes sm

The PEFC Statutes define the objectives, structure and basic procedures of PEFC.

strategy sm

Strategic Plan
Looking forward to the next five years, PEFC strives to further strengthen its positive contribution towards safeguarding the world's forest resources.

PEFC Certified

Forests area: 307 million ha
Forest owners: > 750,000
Companies (CoC): > 20,000

(as of June 2018)

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