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Combating illegal logging

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Combating illegal logging

Illegal logging* is a global problem with significant negative economic, environmental and social impact. To combat this threat, the European Union has adopted a law.

ACT

Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 October 2010 laying down the obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market.

SUMMARY

Illegal logging* is a global problem with significant negative economic, environmental and social impact. To combat this threat, the European Union has adopted a law.

WHAT DOES THIS REGULATION DO?

It prohibits illegally harvested timber from being placed on the EU market, and sets out preconditions for the marketing of timber and timber products in the EU.

KEY POINTS

The regulation requires ‘operators’ who place timber products on the EU market for the first time to exercise ‘due diligence’** to ensure they supply products made of legally harvested timber. To this end, operators must use a due diligence system.

Operators may set up their own due diligence systems or use one created by a monitoring organisation.

Monitoring organisations are recognised as such by the European Commission. Their role is to assist operators comply with the requirements of the regulation.

To facilitate the traceability of timber products, all traders who buy and sell timber on the market must keep records of their suppliers and customers.

The regulation, which applies both to EU-harvested and imported timber, covers a wide range of timber products that are listed in the annex and are in accordance with the Union Customs Code.

The regulation considers timber/timber products to be legally harvested if they have a Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) licence (established with Regulation (EC) No 2173/2005), or a CITES permit (Regulation (EC) No 338/97).

BACKGROUND

Illegal logging is a pervasive environmental, economic and social problem that contributes to climate change, the loss of biodiversity, lost revenue, conflicts (sometimes armed) over land and resources, and corruption.

For more information, see the European Commission’s website on illegal logging.

KEY TERMS

* Illegal logging: the harvesting of timber in violation of the laws of the country of harvest.

** Due diligence: a risk management exercise to minimise the risk of illegally harvested timber (or products containing it) being offered for sale on the EU market.

REFERENCES

Act

Entry into force

Deadline for transposition in the Member States

Official Journal

Regulation (EU) No 995/2010

2.12.2010

-

OJ L 295, 12.11.2010, pp. 23-34

RELATED ACTS

Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 363/2012 of 23 February 2012 on the procedural rules for the recognition and withdrawal of recognition of monitoring organisations as provided for in Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down the obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market (Official Journal L 115, 27.4.2012, pp. 12-16).

Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 607/2012 of 6 July 2012 on the detailed rules concerning the due diligence system and the frequency and nature of the checks on monitoring organisations as provided for in Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down the obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market (Official Journal L 177, 7.7.2012, pp. 16-18).

Council Regulation (EC) No 2173/2005 of 20 December 2005 on the establishment of a FLEGT licensing scheme for imports of timber into the European Community (Official Journal L 347, 30.12.2005, pp. 1-6).

Commission Regulation (EC) No 1024/2008 of 17 October 2008 laying down detailed measures for the implementation of Council Regulation (EC) No 2173/2005 on the establishment of a FLEGT licensing scheme for imports of timber into the European Community (Official Journal L 277, 18.10.2008, pp. 23-29).

Last updated: 13.05.2015

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