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SDG 15. SUSTAINABLY MANAGE FORESTS, COMBAT DESERTIFICATION, HALT AND REVERSE LAND DEGRADATION, HALT BIODIVERSITY LOSS


BY CHOOSING PEFC PRODUCTS
YOU CONTRIBUTE TO SECURE LIFE ON LAND

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Forests cover 30.7 % of the Earth’s surface and, in addition to providing food security and shelter, they are key to combating climate change, protecting biodiversity and the homes of the indigenous population. By protecting forests, we will also be able to strengthen natural resource management and increase land productivity.

At the current time, thirteen million hectares of forests are being lost every year while the persistent degradation of drylands has led to the desertification of 3.6 billion hectares. Even though up to 15% of land is currently under protection, biodiversity is still at risk. Deforestation and desertification – caused by human activities and climate change – pose major challenges to sustainable development and have affected the lives and livelihoods of millions of people in the fight against poverty.

 

Forests & Life on land

- 80% of terrestrial species live in forests - (UN FAO)

Forests and trees constitute an integral part of the global mosaic of landscapes and ecosystems, from tree-dotted savannahs and open woodlands to dense tropical forests and vast boreal forests. They interact with other living organisms, with soil, water and the atmosphere, and provide a wide range of goods and services that are important for society.

Forests are among the most important repositories of biodiversity and their sustainable management is essential not only for conservation, but also for sustaining ecosystem functioning and thereby the continued and healthy provision of ecosystem services such as food production.

Forests also have protective functions as they reduce erosion and the risk of landslides, floods and droughts, and prevent desertification and salinization.

 

PEFC’s contribution to SDG #15

Safeguarding forest biodiversity is core to PEFC. 60% of all certified forests worldwide are managed in line with PEFC’s internationally recognized requirements

Safeguarding the world’s forests by promoting sustainable forest management is core to PEFC, the world’s leading forest certification system. With more than 300 million hectares (that’s about two-thirds of the total land area of the European Union!) of PEFC-certified forests, more than one fifth of the total production of industrial round wood comes as PEFC-certified.

About one million forest owners globally manage their forest in compliance with our Sustainability Benchmark requirements, which are designed to provide appropriate balance the environmental, social and economic dimension of sustainability.  

Developed with active participation of all interested people – from forest owners and industry to NGOS, workers’ unions, local communities and researchers – our standards maintain and enhance forest health and vitality, their biological diversity and protective functions, their contribution to combat climate change, as well as the important role they have from a socio-economic point of view, which is specifically relevant in rural areas and for the more than 1.6 billion people who depend on forests for their livelihoods.

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PEFC’s Sustainable Forest Management requirements contributing to SDG #15:

  • PEFC’s national sustainable forest management requirements
  • Forest certification is officially recognized as an indicator for progress towards SDG 15.2: “by 2020, promote the implementation of sustainable management of all types of forests […]”

 

>> More about the SDGs on the UN website 

>> More about PEFC’s Sustainable Forest Management Requirements