FACTS ON GLOBAL DEFORESTATION
Forests worldwide are under pressure. Much of the focus on deforestation has been on tropical forests, and pressures from Non-Government Organizations (NGOs), businesses (Walmart, Home Depot, etc.) and consumers have worked to create and better enforce regulations in these areas. Comprehensive overviews of global forests can be found in these documents:
- State of the World’s Forests, 2009, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations
- Forest Footprint Disclosure Annual Review 2009
- Scientific Facts on Forests, prepared by GreenFacts.org
One of the most important advancements in the fight against illegal logging in the world’s forests is the Lacey Act passed by the U.S. Congress in 2008. With this act, the U.S. became the first country in the world to ban the import, sale or trade of illegally harvested wood and wood products. Importers of wood products must declare the species and country of origin. There are strong penalties for knowingly sourcing, or failing to exercise due care when sourcing, illegal timber. The U.S. market for eco-friendly timber products is expected to be worth tens of billions of dollars by 2010.