JULY 27, 2001, CLAYOQUOT SOUND – Iisaak Forest Resources Ltd. announced today that it is the first Tree Farm License holder in British Columbia certified to Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®) standards. Iisaak’s Tree Farm License allows the company to harvest timber on a specific area of crown land. Managing 87,000 hectares of coastal temperate rainforest in Clayoquot Sound on Vancouver Island, this certification makes Iisaak the largest certified forest operation in Canada.
Iisaak products will now carry the SmartWood and FSC® certification labels. These labels identify products that come from a forest operation managed to meet high social, economic and environmental standards. A BC regional standard is currently under development. Iisaak’s certification is based on the 2000 SmartWood BC Guidelines for forestry certification in British Columbia.
In the Nuu-chah-nulth language, iisaak means “respect”. Iisaak, a First Nations led joint-venture forest services company, is built on the Nuu-chah-nulth philosophy of Hishuk-ish ts’awalk; respecting the limits of what is extracted and the interconnectedness of all things. “We understand that we cannot manage nature,” said Roman Frank, Ahousaht First Nations Councillor, “we can only manage ourselves.” He added that Iisaak’s conservation-based approach focuses on the forest.
“Iisaak’s forestry practices are an innovative brand of forest management, based on protecting treasured First Nation’s cultural areas, establishing continuous networks for biodiversity conservation and implementing sensitive harvesting practices,” said Steven Price, World Wildlife Fund. “It is also important that Iisaak is creating employment and economic opportunities; cooperating in the development of non-timber enterprises; exploring opportunities associated with the provision of environmental services and obtaining the highest possible value from the timber harvested.”
Weyerhaeuser BC Coastal Group Vice President and Iisaak Board member Linda Coady added, “First Nations majority ownership and the implementation of the Clayoquot Sound Scientific Panel recommendations combine to make Iisaak truly unique.” Weyerhaeuser is a minority partner in Iisaak.
The company began operations in 2000 and in December announced that it had received line of credit financing from Ecotrust Canada and Shorebank Enterprise Pacific, two organizations that have developed a revolving loan fund for conservation based businesses on Vancouver Island.
Iisaak sells its products – logs, lumber and finished products – to customers that include eco-tourism resorts, furniture manufacturers, wildlife carvers, homebuilders, and others who support innovation in environmentally responsible, socially equitable businesses. FSC® certification will open doors to new customers for the special wood produced by Iisaak Forest Resources Ltd.
For more information about Iisaak’s FSC certified wood products visit www.iisaak.com. Contact: Eric Schroff, General Manager, or
Cindy Hazenboom, Communications Coordinator
Fax: (250) 726-2488