photo: Leo Freitas
If you're looking to buy products using sustainably harvested timber from Brazil and it comes from the state of Pará, you may want to reconsider. Mongabay is reporting that a Brazilian federal prosecutor has launched an investigation into companies illegal harvesting wood from protected areas in the state and then passing it off as eco-certified in US, EU, and Asian markets:Though right now no specific firms have been named (at least not in this English-language source, any Portuguese speaking TreeHugger readers care to help out?), some 3,000 companies are alleged to have been involved in the scheme. The timber involved is being sold to both furniture and construction companies.
Mongabay points out that the state of Pará has the highest rate of deforestation in the Amazon since 2006, being responsible for 43% of total forest loss.
And in case you needed reminding, globally, deforestation accounts for about 20% of total greenhouse gas emissions, more than the entire transportation sector combined.
Brazil Announces Plan to Slow Amazon Deforestation by 70% Global Shoe Brands May Be Unwittingly Causing Deforestation in the Amazon: New Greenpeace Report
Greenwashing in the New Yorker: The Sustainable Forestry Initiative
Forest Stewardship Council's New Program
A Picture is Worth: FSC vs SFI Forests