Since the introduction of the FSC credit system, which can only be applied at the level of a single site, companies have shown an interest in a credit system that could be applied at the multi-site level. This would involve exchanging FSC credit between sites without physically transferring the material. Companies see this as the most efficient and practical tool to address the problem of disconnected supply and demand.
In response to this interest, the FSC Board of Directors approved cross-site credit pilot tests in March 2011.
Pilot Test Setup
The FSC Board established the following pre-conditions for the participation of companies in the cross-site credit study:
• FSC credits shall only be shared within a multi-site certificate.
• All sites shall be located within the same eco-region, country or administrative region (e.g. European Union).
• Each participating site must reach a minimum of 10 percent physical FSC input.
• Controlled Wood verification for the entirety of sites.
• All inputs to a shared credit account shall be of the same product group.
Fifteen companies, from different countries and industry sectors, participated in the pilot test, which ran from 1 September 2011 to 30 September 2012.
FSC Board decision on cross-site credits
At its 63rd meeting in Russia, held from 18-20 June 2013, the FSC International Board decided to formally end the cross-site credit account pilot project. The International Board also agreed that the results of the pilot project should feed into the ongoing revision process of the core COC standard (FSC-STD-40-004) for further deliberation. The outcome of this process will be sent out for consultation among the membership as part of the wider COC consultation.
At the end of the standard revision process, the International Board will decide whether or not FSC should allow cross-site credits systems.
Please see the pilot test report for a full presentation of the results.