Overview of CSA Z809
CSA Z809 is a National Standard for Canada for A Sustainable Forest Management System and was published by the Canadian Standards Association (CSA) that is reviewed and revised on a regular basis. The standard, when applied to a specified Defined Forest Area (DFA), will ensure that management objectives are set for the critical elements of the Canadian Council of Forest Ministers’ (CCFM) criteria for sustainable forest management. The SFM system was developed in an open, inclusive, and consensus-oriented forum. It reflects the concerns of many individuals and groups including the forest industry, woodlot owners, governments, academics, scientists, technical experts, and Aboriginal, conservation, environmental, and social organizations.
The standard identifies critical elements for the six CCFM Criteria, all of which must be addressed by the SFM System. Through a process of public participation, local values, goals, indicators, and objectives are developed, based on the critical elements and any additional local factors. To achieve the performance objectives, the SFM System incorporates a management process consistent with the ISO 14001 Standard for Environmental Management System. This process includes commitment, public participation, preparation, planning, implementation, measuring and assessing performance, and review and improvement of the SFM System. The incorporation of feedback loops into this process allows for ongoing enhancement of the integrity and performance of the SFM System, and is designed to lead to continual improvement. Compliance with the SFM Standard is verified through an independent third-party audit. An SFM System applied to a DFA can be registered as complying with the SFM Standard only if all aspects of the SFM Standard are met.
Use of this Standard is voluntary, and is intended to complement and not supplant existing forest policies, laws, and regulations. A registered SFM System is designed to:
- Instill a much broader practice of sustainable forest management;
- Provide information on forest activities and their effectiveness in achieving sustainable forest management;
- Ensure conditions that allow for the setting of new, environmentally, socially, and economically sensitive forest practice objectives as part of the management system; and
- Allow registrants to demonstrate their commitment to sustainable forest management.