PEFC publishes its first two revised technical documents!
18 December 2017 PEFC system news
As part of our comprehensive technical documents revision, we have recently finished the revision of the first two documents and published the approved final versions on our website.
The two documents are our requirements for the development and review of national sustainable forest management standards (PEFC ST 1001) and the procedures for the assessment and endorsement of these standards by PEFC (PEFC GD 1007).
“These two documents have always been linked,” said Michael Berger, Head of Technical Unit at PEFC International. “But after this revision, the link is even stronger.”
Periodic review of national standards after five years
The PEFC endorsement of a national system no longer has an expiry date. Instead, it is linked to the national periodic review, which must be started within five years of the approval date of the national sustainable forest management standard.
The periodic review of a national standard can have two defined outcomes: the standard can either by revised, or reaffirmed without any changes.
“The decision to reaffirm the standard will be an advantage for our members, as it avoids a resource consuming revision process if all stakeholders are still satisfied with the current standard,” explained Michael.
“However, national members must conduct a thorough review and always base their decision to reaffirm the standard on stakeholder approval. Our revised standard now includes specific requirements for the periodic review.”
New approach to the endorsement of national systems
Replacing the expiry date is a system that monitors the national systems’ five-year periodic review cycle and their continuous compliance with our requirements.
Through ‘endorsement milestones’ we set specific deadlines that national members have to meet in order to maintain the endorsement of their system. If a system does not meet a milestone, it risks an automatic suspension of the endorsement.
The first and most important milestone is the review date, five years after the national approval of the sustainable forest management standard. To maintain its PEFC endorsement, the periodic review of the national system must be started before this review date.
The second milestone is the timely submission of the revised standard to PEFC for assessment, at the latest two years after the review date. The assessment will confirm whether the national system continues to comply with the PEFC Sustainability Benchmarks.
Standard Setting (PEFC ST 1001)
- Alignment to the ISEAL Code of Good Practice for Setting Social and Environmental Standards.
- Consideration of gender balance when selecting stakeholders for the working group.
Endorsement (PEFC GD 1007)
- Webinars will be organized as part of the public consultation, informing stakeholders on the content, and changes, in the national standard/system.
- The assessment of a revised system can focus on the introduced changes, rather than the full documents.
- A new procedure for the assessment of reaffirmed standards.