three years of extensive global consultation, 10 Principles and complementaryCriteria
were agreed upon at the FSC's founding meeting in 1993. The FSC's Principles
and Criteria are universal in nature and apply to tropical, temperate
and boreal forests.
cover broad issues such as land tenure, the reduction of environmental
impacts, optimal utilization of forest products, and written management
plans. The Principles and Criteria are used as a guiding framework for
developing standards which are appropriate to social, ecological and
economic conditions at national and/or regional levels.
#1. Compliance with Laws and FSC Principles
management shall respect all applicable laws of the country in which
they occur, and international treaties and agreements to which the country
is a signatory, and comply with all FSC Principles and Criteria.
#2. Tenure & Use Rights and Responsibilities
tenure and use rights to the land and forest resources shall be clearly
defined, documented and legally established.
#3. Indigenous Peoples' Rights
legal and customary rights of indigenous peoples to own, use and manage
their lands, territories, and resources shall be recognized and respected.
#4. Community Relations and Worker's Rights
management operations shall maintain or enhance the long-term social
and economic well-being of forest workers and local communities.
#5. Benefits from the Forest
management operations shall encourage the efficient use of the forests
multiple products and services to ensure economic viability and wide
range of environmental and social benefits.
#6. Environmental Impact
Management shall conserve biological diversity and its associated values,
water resources, soils, and unique and fragile ecosystems and landscapes,
and, by so doing, maintain the ecological functions and the integrity
of the forest.
#7. Management Plan
management plan - appropriate to the scale and intensity of the operations
- shall be written, implemented, and kept up to date. The long term
objectives of management, and the means of achieving them, shall be
#8 Monitoring & Assessment
shall be conducted appropriate to the scale and intensity of forest
management - to assess the condition of the forest, yields of forest
products, chain of custody, management activities and their social and
#9 Maintenance of High Conservation Value Forests
activities in high conservation value forests shall maintain or enhance
the attributes which define such forests. Decisions regarding high conservation
value forests shall always be considered in the context of a precautionary
shall be planned and managed in accordance with Principles and Criteria
1-9, and Principle 10 and its Criteria. While plantations can provide
an array of social and economic benefits, and can contribute to satisfying
the world's needs for forest products, they should complement the management
of, reduce pressures on, and promote the restoration and conservation
of natural forests.