Spotlight on sector: reaching out to the construction sector

As we move out of the forest and down the supply chain, it’s quite amazing to see just how many sectors rely on timber and other forest-based materials. From construction and paper, to packaging, biomass, bamboo, rubber and furniture, even the fashion industry. Forest-based products are really all around us.

As sustainable consumption rises, and we increasingly look to renewable resources such as timber, it is vital that these forest-based products come from sustainable sources. PEFC certification provides a solution for this. By buying a product with PEFC certification and carrying the PEFC label, customers and consumers can be assured it came from a sustainably managed forest.

An important part of our work at PEFC is outreach to sectors relying on forest-based products, promoting the importance of them procuring and working with sustainable, certified timber. We reach out to brands and retailers, encouraging them to switch to sustainable, certified forest-based materials for their packaging. We are also working with the fashion industry to promote the use of sustainable forest-fibres to making clothing. Among many others.

PEFC and the construction industry

The construction industry is a major user of timber. Building with timber has numerous benefits: it’s renewable, requiring considerably less energy than concrete and steel to produce, and storing carbon, rather than emitting it. Timber also enables fast construction, is healthy for people living and working in the building, and allows for creative designs.  

However, the timber needs to come from a sustainable source, ensuring the forest is well-managed and will be around for generations to come, and that the people living in and around the forests are protected. This is what PEFC certification delivers.

Since 2018, we have run our ‘Designing the Future with Sustainable Timber’ campaign, bringing together a range of stakeholders to promote the use of certified wood in construction in general and project certification in particular. 

WAF and the Certified Timber Prize

A flagship activity of this campaign is our partnership with the World Architecture Festival (WAF). Since 2018, we have sponsored the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize, awarding architects and project teams for using certified timber as the main construction material for buildings outstanding in sustainability, innovation, quality or aesthetics.

By celebrating architects that have already chosen to use certified timber, and highlighting the amazing buildings that have been made from it, we aim to promote the use of this sustainable material to a larger audience, ensuring more architects turn to certified timber when choosing their building materials.

Submissions to WAF 2020 are running now, and architects have until 14 August to submit their projects for the Best Use of Certified Timber Prize. We can’t wait to see what stunning buildings are going to be entered this year! The shortlist will be released later this year, and the winner crowned on 5 December. If you can’t wait until there, check out the best entries from 2019 in the gallery below.