THE Australian contingent at the PEFC international sustainability summit in Dublin last week has returned after embracing the theme Climate Change Mitigation: Winning with Wood.
The event was hosted by PEFC Ireland and included a range of speakers on the whole value chain from forest to consumer, exploring how forests and wood-based products play a crucial role in the fight to combat climate change.
A highlight was the Stakeholder Dialogue Day at Dun Laoghaire, Dublin, on May 12.
‘We are thrilled that PEFC’s first post pandemic, international stakeholder meeting since 2019 took place in Ireland,” said William Merivale who heads up PEFC Ireland.
“Sustainably-managed forests are so important and it’s rare that so many people that play a day-to-day part in making the world a cleaner and healthier place can come together in one place.”
Speakers including Senator Pippa Hackett, Minister of State for Forestry, Department of Agriculture, Food and Marine, who outlined Ireland’s COP26 goals and forestry’s role in achieving them and Dr Pablo van der Lugt, lecturer in bio-based building at Delft University of Technology and author of Tomorrow’s Timber, who emphasised why timber and circular thinking provided a ‘futureproof’ building material choice. Moderator was Dr Dorothy Maxwell, director of sustainability at Davy Horizons, one of HRH The Prince of Wales’s responsible business ambassadors and ex-director of sustainability at House of Fraser.
“With an increasingly environmentally-aware consumer base, influential market sectors such as construction, food to go, retailers and FMCG (fast moving consumer goods), manufacturers are rapidly adopting circular habits and switching to renewable, recyclable and responsibly sourced materials such as timber and wood based products,” William Merivale said.
Delegates exchanged ideas on the benefits of using low-carbon forest products and the assurances of responsible sourcing that PEFC certification offers.
‘If we are to achieve the 2050 net zero carbon targets agreed at COP26, using sustainable timber products such as those certified by PEFC is essential,” Mr Merivale said.
Responsible Wood is the National Governing Body for PEFC in Australia. To find out more about Responsible Wood, PEFC in Australia and forest certification more generally please visit the Responsible Wood website.