Opinion: California AB 416 Threatens Critical Housing Initiative and Impedes Environmental Progress
California has made important strides to address home affordability and to be a leader in environmental sustainability. 就在上周, Governor 新闻om pledged to expand housing production in California with a suite of bills intended to address the interrelated challenges related to environmental policies and housing affordability.
然而, the California Deforestation-Free Procurement Act (AB 416) could significantly disrupt Governor 新闻om’s laudable housing objectives.
As passed, AB 416 is counterproductive to boosting housing supply. Namely, because the legislation ignores the fact that sustainable, working U.S. and Canadian forests provide numerous benefits to the environment and local communities.
A healthy forest products industry goes hand-in-hand with healthy forests. 在美国.S. 和加拿大, the vast majority of wood used to produce paper and wood products is sourced from 可持续管理 forests. 另外, third-party and robust certification programs already exist and are utilized to meet forest management standards.
最近, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization recognized the important role that sustainable forest management plays in addressing carbon reduction goals. 目前的情况是, AB 416 ignores the fact that the United States 和加拿大’s forestry laws align with the UN’s definition of Sustainable Forest Management. It also fails to recognize that our forest sector is built on key principles of sustainability.
如果签署成为法律, AB 416 would make it far more difficult to achieve affordable housing goals by limiting the supply of sustainability-sourced wood and other forest products, 增加木材和其他森林产品的成本, 损害劳工权益, 和减少竞争.
This legislation would also have unintended consequences for products made with recycled content. Surprisingly, recycled content is not exempt from the bill’s reporting requirements.
Recycled paper and packaging fibers can be reused five to seven times to make new products. It is impossible for manufacturers to determine the original source of the fiber used in their products. That’s because it has likely already been recovered and recycled into new products several times before being used by that manufacturer to make its paper product. 作为一个结果, state agencies would have great difficulty procuring recycled content products when no vendor can reasonably prove the original source of its recovered fiber.
Americans and Canadians share common interests in building back a post-pandemic economy that will propel us toward a sustainable future.
We welcome efforts to recognize the important role that sustainable forest management will play in advancing this vision, 然而, AB 416未能达到这一目标. 此外，加州是一个例外. No other state has passed this type of burdensome legislation.
海蒂·布洛克是总统和美国森林的首席执行官 & 纸协会.
Derek Nighbor is the President and CEO of Forest Products Association of Canada.