SFI Blog: Why USGBC Should Recognize SFI – No Certification Program Can Credibly Claim to be ‘Best’

Read the latest blog post on goodforforests.com.

By Guest Blogger:  C. Randall (Randy) Dye, President, National Association of State Foresters

The U.S. Green Building Council is inviting comments on the draft language for its LEED rating system. SFI Inc. has invited views on the treatment of third-party forest certification, which must be “FSC or better” according to the latest USGBC credit language. In this post, Randy Dye, West Virginia State Forester and President of the National Association of State Foresters (NASF), talks about NASF’s position on third-party forest certification and green building.

State Foresters have long been advocates of policies encouraging the use of domestic wood products for green building – from both economic and environmental perspectives. State foresters have a unique public trust responsibility for America’s forests, and we have been active leaders in the growth and evolution of third-party forest certification as an important tool that is making a positive contribution in our public and private forests.

We welcomed a report last year from the U.S. Department of Agriculture showing that wood is superior to other construction materials in terms of environmental benefits, and applauded USDA’s statement that “Sustainability of forest products can be verified using any credible third-party rating system, such as Sustainable Forestry Initiative, Forest Stewardship Council or American Tree Farm System.” We still see a need for change in the U.S. Green Building Council’s (USGBC) treatment of both wood and forest certification in the draft language for LEED.