Bart van der Linden

Director of FSC Netherlands

The international, independent FSC hallmark provides assurance that the raw materials for wood and paper products were derived from forests that are managed responsibly, with due regard to the people who depend on the forest for their livelihood. All major conservation and development organisations recommend FSC wood, making FSC unique in its kind. A network-based organisation with over 290 partners, the foundation FSC Netherlands seeks to maximise the share of FSC-certified wood and paper on the Dutch market. BAM has had a signed agreement in place with FSC Netherlands since 2007.

The Borneo Initiative

Royal BAM Group works with area developers Bouwfonds Ontwikkeling in support of the Borneo Initiative, which is an organisation that promotes sustainable forest management in Indonesia by
encouraging and supporting the certification of wood in accordance with the FSC hallmark. BAM signed a covenant with The Borneo Initiative in 2009.

Imagine you are passing a scanner over a wooden door or window frame and on the display you see ‘100% FSC wood from the Black Forest, Germany’. You also see a picture of the centuries-old Black Forest… Is this science fiction? It certainly doesn’t need to be by 2020 according to Bart van der Linden, the Director of FSC Netherlands (Forest Stewardship Council). He talks about ‘good’ forest stewardship and sustainable procurement, both now and in the future.

‘The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is an international organisation which promotes responsible forest stewardship, with due regard for the well-being of people and wildlife. The FSC sets global standards for responsible forest management with an associated hallmark. Forests are disappearing or shrinking worldwide. Our aim is to preserve them. Effective management plans are also needed to keep a forest in a ‘fit’ condition. In addition, we always look to the long term by drawing up a management plan for 25 years.

Together with over 290 partner organisations, FSC Netherlands is dedicated ensuring integrity of the Dutch market and truly responsible forest stewardship. We provide information and try to persuade everyone in the construction supply chain that there is a choice and they can support good forest stewardship in making that choice. Collaboration with partners is essential. BAM is working with FSC Netherlands to implement projects with FSC certified wood and is also participating in the international development programme the Borneo Initiative. BAM understands that there is a choice and chooses FSC wood wherever possible. Experience over the last year has shown that you need to stand firm during the procurement process, certainly in relation to the traditional wood trade. ‘Good’ wood can easily be supplied if it is specified early on in the construction process.

Certification for businesses that use FSC wood is carried out at the source – in the forest – all the way through to the last step. Everyone who supplies FSC wood to BAM must be able to demonstrate that they have the necessary chain of custody certificate, which shows that the shipment originated from an FSC forest.’

How can BAM improve as a covenant partner?

‘Well, rather than primarily having contact with the corporate headquarters, we would also like to approach BAM’s operating companies in a targeted way. For example, it was great to be involved in a Schakel & Schrale restoration project. Our collaboration becomes much firmer through such close relationships and more efficient too.’

How do you see the future?

‘Thanks to new technology, it is now possible to show a picture of the forest that a piece of wood comes from. We can make the whole process transparent simply by inserting a smart chip to which data is added. We then have the relationship between a piece of wood used here and the forest it was sourced from in a perfect format!’