除了主要發起者世界資源研究所、環境調查協會(Environmental Investigation Agency)與美國國際開發署之外，加入聯盟的成員包括美國森林暨紙業協會(American Forest & Paper Association)、硬木聯合商會(Hardwood Federation)、IKEA，國際木製品協會(International Wood Products Association)、新品紙業(NewPage Corporation)、零售業領導協會(Retail Industry Leaders' Association)、史泰博文具(Staples Inc.)與世界企業永續發展協會(WBCSD)。
「舉凡樂器到教科書，美國與國外的法律正從根本改變木材與所有木材製品貿易與製造的方式。」位於華盛頓特區的環境調查協會執行長沙夏‧ 馮俾斯麥(Sascha von Bismarck)說道。「供應商若不注意這些新的政策，除了信譽危機，也可能遭受財務上的惡果。
To reduce trade in illegally harvested wood, a global initiative was launched today in Washington that brings together conservation groups, government agencies, corporations and business associations with a stake in promoting legal forest product supply chains.
The Forest Legality Alliance aims to achieve better forest governance and biodiversity conservation by reducing demand for illegally harvested forest products and increasing the capacity of suppliers to deliver legal wood and paper.
"The Alliance seeks to build confidence that imported wood and paper products are legal. Done right, trade supports environmental protection and the Alliance recognizes the role trade plays in protecting our world's great forests," said Craig Hanson of the World Resources Institute, one of the founding members of the Alliance.
"Some companies are not aware of the need to ask questions about the wood they are buying or the consequences of letting illegal wood enter their supply chains," said Hanson, who directs WRI's People and Ecosystems Program.
The Alliance will focus on the capacity for legal trade in the sector as a whole, rather than on the performance of individual companies, and will complement existing initiatives that certify legality and sustainability.
Joining the World Resources Institute, the Environmental Investigation Agency, and the U.S. Agency for International Development in the Alliance are the American Forest & Paper Association, the Hardwood Federation, IKEA, the International Wood Products Association, NewPage Corporation, the Retail Industry Leaders' Association, Staples Inc., and the World Business Council for Sustainable Development, WBCSD.
The Alliance will work to ensure that importers and supply chains know and understand emerging new trade policies that target illegally harvested wood.
For instance, in 2008, the U.S. government amended the Lacey Act to prohibit trade within the United States of products made from wood harvested in violation of the laws of a foreign country. With this amendment, the United States became the first country in the world to ban imports of illegal wood and related products.
"From musical instruments to textbooks, legislation in the United States and abroad is fundamentally changing how wood and everything that is made from wood is traded and produced," said Sascha von Bismarck, executive director of the Environmental Investigation Agency in Washington, DC. "Suppliers unaware of these emerging policies could face financial repercussions in addition to reputational risk."
"The Alliance will work to provide businesses and civil society groups the information they need to avoid risks and create change in the world's forests," she said.
Forests currently cover 30 percent of the world's land area but only 10 percent of production forests is independently certified for sustainability, said WBCSD president Bjorn Stigson at the annual PricewaterhouseCoopers Global Forest and Paper Industry Conference in Vancouver earlier this month.
As part of the services it provides, the Alliance will develop new online resources that help companies assess the risk of encountering illegal wood, conduct due care, and complete import declarations.
The Alliance intends to demonstrate through a series of pilot tests with volunteer Alliance members that compliance with new demand-side requirements can be feasible and cost-effective, and identify practical ways to reduce and mitigate unintended burdens on importers and producers.