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Industry Insight

Going Green Two Sides Fast Fact #40

WhatTheyThink’s Going Green has joined forces with Two Sides to help address the “perceptions” that paper destroys forests,

By Richard Romano
Published: February 4, 2013

Fast-Fact-LogoWhatTheyThink’s Going Green has joined forces with Two Sides to help address the “perceptions” that paper destroys forests, that electronic media are “greener” than print and paper, and that recycling is the solution to all environmental ills. Via Two Sides UK, WWF’s new Living Forests Report says, in part, “By 2050, rising population and demand, as well as an increase in use of wood for bioenergy, could triple the amount of wood society takes from forests and plantations per year, according to the latest installment of WWF’s Living Forests Report. The report...projects paper production and consumption may double in the next three decades, and overall wood consumption may triple.” Why Should You Care? The report (and the release [PDF] culled from the report) adds, “The report indicates that by 2050 up to 25 per cent more forests might be commercially harvested than today.” Now, mind you, this is not just for paper, but for a wide range of forest products, including furniture, construction materials, and everything else we use wood for. Paper comprises only a small part of the larger “forestry products” category, yet invariably gets singled out as a “tree killer.” Go figure. The point is, there is nothing inherently destructive about harvesting trees for wood products. It all comes down to sustainable forest management. A well-managed tree plantation can serve both masters of providing the raw materials for the products we demand, and preserve the overall health of the forest and promote biodiversity. Is every forest well-managed? Unfortunately, no, and it is the rapaciously run tree farms that have given the whole thing a bad name. Say what you want about forestry products certification associations and programs, and while they are not perfect, they are one of the best lines of defense in ensuring that we maintain the balance between providing the products society wants and needs, and keeping the forests healthy for their own sake, and for ours. After all, badly managed tree farms are not just bad for forests, but bad for those doing the harvesting, as a forest whose health fails will not provide profitable products for very long. For more Two Sides facts see http://www.twosides.us/mythsandfacts.

Please offer your feedback to Richard. He can be reached at richard@whattheythink.com.



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