PEFC Targets 15% Increase in Certified Forests by 2030

PEFC International launches new strategic plan guiding activities across 55 member countries

Fri 26 May 23


PEFC International has launched its new “PEFC Alliance 2030 Strategy,” shaping the future of the world’s largest forest certification scheme and its member countries over the next seven years.

  • Click here to view a brief overview of the PEFC Alliance 2030 Strategy

The new strategy was approved by the PEFC Alliance, comprising 55 member countries, during the 2023 General Assembly in Vancouver, Canada. The strategy strongly focuses on Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) factors and is more ‘externally oriented’ according to a statement released by PEFC International.

David Ford, Vice President of PEFC International, spoke about the new strategy during the PEFC Members Week.

“Our new 2030 strategy is built on a strong framework of four strategic pathways and fourteen key performance indicators. It illustrates our dedication to healthy forests, healthy forest communities, healthy forest workers, and a healthy forest economy.”

PEFC International Vice Chair addressed the PEFC Alliance during the second day of PEFC Members Week in Vancouver, Canada. Image courtesy of @PEFC

Michael Berger, CEO and General Secretary of PEFC International, said the strategy better aligns PEFC with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

“The development of the new PEFC Alliance 2030 Strategy, aligned with the SDGs, demonstrates how the PEFC members, Board, and secretariat came together to build an ambitious strategy. The implementation and monitoring journey begins now, which we will undertake with purpose and agility.”

PEFC to increase its global certified area by 15%

The new strategy identifies a ‘2030 Desired Impact’ for a 15% increase in global forest area over the next seven years. In 2022, the FAO published a report outlining a four-fold increase in demand for timber by 2050 – with PEFC (and FSC) under pressure to grow forest areas to meet demand.

Much of the increased demand for timber is expected to come from emerging markets – specifically Africa, the Middle East, and the Oceanic regions – with PEFC recognising the importance of expanding its alliance to grow the 13% of global forests covered by forest certification.

The full document, available for download below, does not clarify the status of Russian and Belarusian forests, suspended by PEFC in 2022.

  • Click here to download the full plan

The decision to suspend both member countries from the PEFC alliance resulted in the total supply of PEFC-certified forests contracting by 15% since March 2022. FSC, which followed PEFC in suspending Russia and Belarus from certification, resulted in the total supply of FSC-certified forests contracting by almost 35% over the same time.

Effectively PEFC is looking to new member countries to cover the loss of global forest area due to Russia’s war with Ukraine.

The new strategy took 18 months to develop

According to PEFC, the new plan is more ‘impact-focused’, with PEFC looking too healthy forests and vibrant forest communities whose livelihoods depend on sustainably managed forests. The strategy development process started in January 2022 – and after an 18-month consultation, the strategy is now live.

“We are grateful to our members and stakeholders, who have helped bring the PEFC Alliance to where it is today, and we look forward to delivering together on this new strategy through this dynamic and critical time,” Michael Berger said.


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