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Warning: Do you deal in timber or timber products?

Posted on: 2011-11-20 12:12:34

Do you deal in timber or timber products?

From March 2013, Regulation will put more obligations on those who place timber or timber products onto the market for the first time.  This article presents the reasons for this Regulation and the Legislation behind it.

Why more Regulation?

Regulation (EU) 995/2010 (OJ:L295/23/2010) is made in response to the increasing problem of illegal logging and the sale of the timber.  Some of the provisions within this Regulation are already in force.    

The Regulation is made in order to prevent illegally harvested wood and any products made from it from entering the market. This follows the 2003 'Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT): Proposal for an EU Action Plan’.

Which Legislation?

‘The Illegally Logged Timber Bill (Prohibition of Import, Sale or Distribution)’ Bill is due for House of Commons 2nd reading on the 25th November 2011.  

What is illegal logging and harvesting?

Illegal logging is the harvesting of timber in contravention of the laws and regulations of the country of harvest.  Illegal logging is a global problem which creates negative economic, environmental and social impact.

In economic terms -  it results in lost revenues. 

In environmental terms - it means deforestation, climate change and a loss of biodiversity. 

In social terms - it is linked to conflicts over land and resources, the disempowerment of local and indigenous communities and armed conflicts.

Who does it cover?

Operators  - any natural or legal person who places timber or timber products on the market.

Traders -  any natural or legal person who, in the course of a commercial activity, sells or buys on the internal market timber or timber products already placed on the internal market;

What does it cover?

Illegally harvested timber is covered by a list of wide ranging products contained within this and related regulation.  Examples include fuel wood, wooden furniture, builders’ joinery and carpentry.

What are the implications?

The sale of illegal timber and timber products will be prohibited.   The timber must be traceable to the suppliers and buyers, and operators must operate a due diligence system.  The system will contain:

measures to provide access to information regarding the operators supply of timber

risk assessment procedures to evaluate the risk of illegal timber and timber products made from it appearing on the market

risk prevention procedures

Who will enforce it?

Competent authorities will be designated by Member States to apply this Regulation. Competent authorities will also check operators to verify that they are complying with this Regulation.  If not, the competent authority will take appropriate action.

In addition, monitoring organisations will be created to ensure they are carrying out their duties appropriately.

Will there be penalties?

Fines will be considered on the basis of different factors relating to the breach of this Regulation.

Where can I get more information?

Here are some useful links:

How can we help?

If you would like an easy to read, jargon free version of the Regulation, including a full list of timber products implicated, please use the contact form on:

PB Energy Solutions can provide expert advice in this field including full product traceability through supply chains.   

Prepare now for the obligations that will be placed on you.

Do not hesitate to contact us for free, no obligation advice: