The Sustainable Forestry Initiative of the American Forest & Paper AssociationThis article is part of a larger document. View the larger document here.
The Sustainable Forestry Initiative (SFI)is a comprehensive program of forestry and conservation practices designed to ensure that future generations of Americans will have the same abundant forests that we enjoy today. The SFI was developed by the American Forest & Paper Association (AF&PA),the national trade group that represents forest and paper companies. The SFI was implemented on October 14,1994,and consists of forest principles that spell out five broad elements of sustainable forestry and 12 implementation guidelines that translate the principles into action by providing forest managers with the means to achieve sustainable forestry. The principles and guidelines,which include requirements for sustainable forestry practices, long-term forest health and productivity, prompt reforestation, protection of water quality and the promotion of sustainable forestry on private nonindustrial lands,are mandatory for continued membership with AF&PA. Since the SFI was implemented approximately 2 years ago,the industry has made tremendous progress toward achieving sustainable forestry. Examples include a reduction in the average size clear-cut to 61 acres for AF&PA member companies, reforestation of 2.4 million acres, expenditures of $114 million on research related to forestry, wildlife, and the environment,the training of some 37,000 loggers,and an information and education program that has reached 41,000 private nonindustrial landowners.An independent panel of forestry experts,who review industry ’s compliance with the SFI each year,summed up industry ’s progress to date by stating:There is a significant change underway in America ’s forests-—a change for the better in the forest products industry,through the SFI as a leader of that change. This change will not occur overnight,but through incremental progress,it will occur.