Today SFI delivered nearly 6,000 petition signatures and hundreds of comments to President, CEO & Founding Chairman of the U.S. Green Building Council Rick Fedrizzi urging the organization to open LEED. Our petition helps demonstrate what we already suspected—there’s a broad base of supporters who are deeply committed and passionate about responsible forest management, green building and the communities that depend on these forests.
The road through the USGBC review process has not been short or uncomplicated, and in the end, we hope the organization gets past its outdated process and the politics around the LEED forest certification policy. Inclusiveness is the answer. It’s what other green building programs and codes globally already have applied. Multiple forest certification programs push each other to do better, and they serve different needs.
One-fifth of all U.S. governors have written letters in support of opening LEED. Professional societies including the National Association of State Foresters, the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers and the Society of American Foresters have released statements urging the USGBC to change its policy.
The USGBC needs to focus on the facts and create a program that recognizes the value of wood as a green building material and all the benefits credible forest certification programs bring. Considering the staggering number of responses in the petition, along with broad support from respected forestry experts, conservation groups and government officials, our common vision should be impossible to ignore.
For the sake of our forests, our communities, the tens of thousands of family foresters who make their livelihoods from forestry and the future of green building across North America and globally, it is time for USGBC to do the right thing and recognize all credible forest certification standards: SFI, ATFS, CSA, FSC and PEFC.
Now is not the time to let up. Show support for increased certification by signing our petition, as well as passing along our green building video to friends and family. If you’re a voting member of USGBC, vote against the current benchmarks. Ask the USGBC to accept all credible forest certification standards. Do what’s best for our forests here in North America and globally.
Thank you for your ongoing support of this important initiative!