Speaking for the Trees

Speaking for the Trees.

“Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”

I always thought this was the best line in the Dr.Seuss’ 1971 fable, The Lorax, and it is taking on new relevance with the recent release of the movie,Dr. Seuss’ The Lorax. The good news is that we know a lot more today about sustainable forest management and we have new tools to help us.

In the last 15 years, certification programs like the Sustainable Forestry Initiative® (SFI®) have strengthened forest practices and raised understanding about what forests mean to us and to our communities and to the wildlife that rely on forests for their survival.  Despite the growth in forest certification in North America, there is a lot more work to be done – with 90 percent of the world’s forests still not certified.

I sure hope the movie advances our efforts by inspiring more people, young and old, to think about our forests and how crucial they are to our lives: from the air we breathe, to the recreational, wildlife and traditional values they support, to the wood to build our homes and for the paper and packaging we use every day.

SFI and its many partners are already showing we “care a whole awful lot” through our forest standard and through our many activities – including forest research like critical habitat for grizzlies, conservation partnerships, logger training and landowner outreach. We’re supporting community activities of the Boy Scouts and Girl Guides, and the National 4-H Forestry Invitational. But it’s an immense task, and we sure can’t do it alone.

That’s why I welcomed the UN’s International Year of Forests in 2011, why I applaud the efforts of the nation’s State Foresters, and why I am encouraged by a message that is based on hope and renewal. It tells us that forests matter, and we must care for them responsibly. To do that, we need more opportunities for meaningful discussion about how we conserve the health and productivity of our forests. SFI is committed to that mission; our label is a sign of responsible forestry and our commitment is to maintaining our treasured forests for today and into the future.

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