American Forest & Paper Association President and CEO Donna Harman thanked Congress for reaffirming that federal regulatory policy should reflect the carbon neutrality of forest-based renewable biomass. Fiscal Year 2019 appropriations legislation, which passed the House and Senate, contains legislative language to that effect. “We thank our bipartisan Congressional champions for advancing a measure that recognizes long-standing scientific principles and appropriately reflects the paper and wood products industry’s use of carbon neutral biomass for energy production. We are one of the largest manufacturing sectors in the nation and deserve clear public policy that supports our ability to grow the economy, create American manufacturing jobs and stay in step with global competition. We look forward to working with the Environmental Protection Agency, the Department of Energy and the United States Department of Agriculture to fully implement this Congressional directive.”
To support certified entities and certification bodies during the COVID-19 challenge, we have extended the transition period for our three revised international standards by six months.
This extension applies to the 2020 versions of the Chain of Custody (ST 2002), PEFC Trademarks (ST 2001) and Certification Body Requirements – Chain of Custody (ST 2003) standards. The transition date is now 14 February 2022.
This extension gives certified entities and certification and accreditation bodies an additional six months to align their procedures with the requirements in the 2020 versions of these three vital standards. The aim of the extension is to give our stakeholders more flexibility in when they move to the 2020 standards, as we understand the current situation is very difficult for many companies around the world.
In addition to this extension, we have also provided guidance to certified entities and certification bodies regarding auditing.
The document provides general procedures for the application of this guidance, as well as specific rules for initial and re-certification audits, surveillance audits and verification of corrective actions.
For certification bodies currently providing PEFC chain of custody certification services, we have provided comprehensive guidance on what you need to do in order to offer certification against the 2020 standards.
For PEFC chain of custody certified companies, there’s information on what the 2020 standards mean for your certification and how it will affect your use of the PEFC label. If you are not certified, but thinking about getting certified, we have also provided advice on what your next steps should be.