Fidest – Agenzia giornalistica/press agency

Quotidiano di informazione – Anno 34 n° 137

LEED Certification: The Experts Meet the Activists

Posted by fidest press agency su martedì, 10 aprile 2012

All is not well with the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). As more stakeholders come out in support of reforming the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) LEED certification policy, FSC is fighting tooth and nail to maintain its monopoly, a position that has been bad value for both consumers and taxpayers. But this ongoing fight is all the more damaging because FSC and their fellow greens appear to have lost support from one of their most dependable allies—organized labor. As we have already highlighted, the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAMAW) have declared their support for LEED to include wood certified by the Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI), one of FSC’s competing certifiers. But just when the split between green groups and organized labor is become more and more apparent, noted forestry companies such as Cross & Crown in Oregon are also becoming much more vocal in their support to reform LEED. In fact, Robert A. Luoto, the owner of Cross & Crown, went as far to claim that by “giving preferential treatment to FSC, which has 90 percent of its certified land outside the United States, USGBC discourages the use of timber and other forest by‑products harvested on three million acres of lands certified to the SFI Standard in Oregon alone.” Without reform, USGBC is jeopardizing the future of the American forestry industry, especially small landholders who simply can’t afford to comply with FSC’s unnecessary standards. But without the support of unions, business and small landholders, FSC are looking increasingly isolated. Unlike SFI, FSC is thoroughly ideological and has pursed market interference measures both domestically and internationally. But with so much at stake, FSC’s real motives are gradually being found out. It’s therefore hardly surprising that with LEED reforms on the horizon, this debate would juxtapos e the experts against the activists. And there are no prizes for guessing which side is which.

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