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​Sustainable Forest Management- Why Does It Matter?

Posted by Jenna Levy on 26th May 2015

Let’s talk about sustainable forest management. It’s something that we here at Decibel Designs are extremely loyal to. The products that you see are made with sustainable forest husbandry for cabinet lumber in mind, every meticulous detail thought of from the evolution of the lumber through the creative process.

It’s also an issue, which is highly under valued. By definition, sustainable forest management is the management of our forests aligning with the principles of sustainable development. According to both the Food Agriculture Organization and the Ministerial Conference on the Protection of Forests and Europe, here’s how we define it-

“The stewardship and use of forests and forest lands in a way, and at a rate, that maintains their biodiversity, productivity, regeneration capacity, vitality and their potential to fulfill, now and in the future, relevant ecological, economic and social functions, at local, national, and global levels, and that does not cause damage to other ecosystems.”

This is a work in progress but it keeps in mind very broad environmental goals, economic goals and social goals. Experts continue to test tools and methods to ensure that our forests are protected and that industries like carpentry and architecture are still supported around the world.

A little bit of history context. In 1992, the Forest Principles were adopted by the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED). These were the first documented foray into general understanding of what sustainable forest management meant and would it could be, moving forward. Since 1992 the UNCED has finessed different criteria and indicators to figure out exactly how helpful these principles have been. Fast-forward fifteen years. In 2007, the General Assembly of the UN adopted Non Legally Binding Instrument on All Types of Forests. This was a really great turning point on the journey for sustainable forestry as it really showed a partnership between countries all over the world, as well as a strong stance on its importance.

This has been particularly challenging for forest managers. It falls on their shoulders to determine, in a tangible, physical way, how to use the forest to maximize its benefits, its health and its productivity in the years to come. They have to assess, they have to analyze, they have to integrate so many different factors into the decision making process. If a forest manager had ten different arms, they would all be being yanked in different directions. This means that there are a multitude of partnerships and consultants that they work with- citizens, organizations, businesses and government branches.

Why is this so important to us at Decibel Designs? It’s a balance. It’s a balance between using our resources in a responsible manner and ensuring that those resources will be there for years to come. There are so many different markets and creative outlets that depend on the beautiful forests around the world. Decibel Designs feels grateful for a surplus of our medium, but part of our ethos is appreciating wood and forestry in its natural form.