Barking up the right tree in Derbyshire

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An environmental campaign which urges local authorities to use sustainable wood and timber has been boosted by Derbyshire County Council.

Conservation body the WWF introduced their timber pledge campaign to make sure local authorities are buying responsibly sourced wood and paper in everything from building projects to furniture – and so far 83 local councils have said they will support it.

Derbyshire County Council has committed itself to the gold pledge which means they will set up a recording and monitoring system to ensure forest products used meet requirements set out by the WWF.

The WWF estimates that the public sector is responsible for around 20 per cent of all timber bought in the UK.

Derbyshire County Council’s cabinet member for recycling and technology, Councillor John Allsop, said: “Local authorities clearly have a large role to play on this issue which is why we are backing this important campaign.

“As a council we’re committed to the environment and would like to set a good example to others on this issue – whether it’s in terms of the work we do or making sure the right monitoring systems are in place to check the work others carry out on our behalf.”

At the moment, the council’s property department make sure all timber and timber sheet materials are sourced using the Government’s latest guidelines.

They also use reduced environmental impact paper which carries the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) mark as being from responsible sources.

The WWF will support the authority to build on its existing environmental commitment and achieve the gold pledge.

It will assist with a timber policy, improve current contracts and develop monitoring and recording systems.

According to WWF research, 84 per cent of people said they believed their local authority should commit to buying sustainable wood and timber.