Phil Woolas speaks to the trade at the TTJ Conference
The Stern Report highlighted the strong links between forestry and climate change; deforestation accounts for around 18% of global greenhouse gas emissions – more than the entire global transport sector. Phil Woolas MP has recently taken on his new portfolio as Minister of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which includes direct responsibility for the Government’s timber procurement policy. He delivered his first presentation to the industry at the TTJ conference setting out the government’s commitment to sustainability and how timber is a part of that. He was keen to congratulate industry on progress so far; particularly in view of private sector work on increasing certification and addressing illegal logging. However his message was clear; the industry needs to do more and with the climate change agenda very firmly on the governments priority list; timber needs to prove its environmental credentials if it wants to be considered the construction material of choice. A copy of his full speech can be found on the Defra website here.