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January/February 2011
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Categorizing Wood

A new ASTM International standard will provide forestry management and certification systems with directions for categorizing wood according to fiber sources.

D7612, Practice for Categorizing Wood and Wood-Based Products According to Their Fiber Sources, was developed by Subcommittee D07.08 on Forests, part of ASTM International Committee D07 on Wood.

The new standard creates generic terms to categorize wood and wood-based products according to their fiber source in one of three categories:

  • Legal sources — Produced with wood fiber from jurisdictions with a low risk of illegal activity or from controlled wood standards, stair-step standards, legality assessment or other proprietary standards;
  • Responsible sources — Produced with wood fiber acquired according to an independently certified procurement standard or from a proprietary forestry standard or from jurisdictions with regulatory or quasi-regulatory programs to implement best management practices; and
  • Certified sources — Produced with wood fiber acquired in accordance with, and independently certified to, an internationally recognized voluntary forest certification standard or equivalent.

“As D7612 gains traction, it will be referenced within various state forest management regulatory systems as well as major forest certification systems,” says Donald DeVisser, acting executive vice president, West Coast Lumber Inspection Bureau, and chairman of D07.08. “Independent organizations will assess how each program fits within ASTM D7612. Eventually, green building rating systems, codes and standards will reference forest management practices in terms of what they deliver rather than simply referencing their alphabet soup of names.”

According to DeVisser, D7612 will be particularly useful in combination with D7480, Guide for Evaluating the Attributes of a Forest Management Plan. More information on the latter standard, which is based on the Montreal Process developed by an international working group of forestry professionals to promote sustainablity forestry practices, can be found in the SpotLight column of this issue of SN.

DeVisser invites anyone with expertise in forest management to participate in future revisions of D7612.

CONTACT

Technical Information: Donald DeVisser, West Coast Lumber Inspection Bureau, Portland, Ore.

Phone: 503-639-0651

ASTM Staff: Kevin Shanahan

Phone: 610-832-9737