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Certified Organic Forests & Timber: the Hippocratic Opportunity

Paull, John (2007) Certified Organic Forests & Timber: the Hippocratic Opportunity. In: Proceedings ANZSEE Conference, ANZSEE (Australia New Zealand Society for Ecological Economics), 2007, pp. 1-14.

[thumbnail of 11042.pdf] PDF - English


Organic farming was proposed in 1940 by Lord Northbourne as a response to chemical agriculture. Since then, organic agriculture has developed into an international A$50 billion industry with annual growth reported up to 30%. Currently it is one of the fastest growing food sectors with demand exceeding supply in many markets, and price premiums averaging 80% in Australia. With economic, and now environmental, incentives for planting trees, there is the opportunity, and even imperative, for a new silviculture category that embraces the precepts of organic agriculture. There are environmental, economic and ethical issues with carbon offset programmes that seek to reduce, or erase, the carbon footprint of an activity, while collaterally increasing the pesticide footprint; this may be a Faustian bargain. Certified Organic Forestry standards have made a tentative start with a modest uptake. Organic forestry offers a clean green, rather than a dirty green, option for carbon offsets, and can appeal to those inclined to a precautionary principle rather than a postcautionary principle approach. As consumers who are already familiar with the premises and promises of organic food and agriculture are attracted to carbon offsetting, this customer group has the potential to drive demand for Certified Organic Forestry. Moving beyond the current chemical forestry and silviculture standards to an organic silviculture presents a matrix of new opportunities, implications, impediments and even stakeholders.

EPrint Type:Conference paper, poster, etc.
Type of presentation:Paper
Keywords:certified organic forestry, forest, timber, forestry standards, carbon offsets, precautionary principle, postcautionary principle, Hippocrates, climate change, clean green, dirty green, FSC, carbon neutral, pesticide neutral, Debio, Naturland, IFOAM
Subjects: Environmental aspects
"Organics" in general
Values, standards and certification
Values, standards and certification > Consumer issues
Research affiliation:Australia > Australian National University
Deposited By: Paull, Dr John
ID Code:11042
Deposited On:16 Jul 2007
Last Modified:12 Apr 2010 07:35
Document Language:English
Refereed:Peer-reviewed and accepted

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