Greenpeace campaigner on global power list for pulp and paper sector

Feature story - July 30, 2008
Greenpeace Forests Campaign Coordinator Richard Brooks has been named to a "Top 50 Power List" of people considered the most influential in the global pulp and paper industry.

Greenpeace Forests Campaign Coordinator Richard Brooks surveying the devastation caused by Kimberly-Clark in the Kenogami Forest in northern Ontario.

This recognition comes at a time when the Greenpeace forest campaign is celebrating some recent victories but is right now looking with great apprehension at the potential for renewed conflict in the old-growth forests of Clayoquot Sound in British Columbia. Greenpeace, through Richard and his colleagues in the forests campaign, will be key players in efforts to prevent logging in Clayoquot's old-growth forests.

The power list was developed by RISI, which markets itself as the leading information provider on the global forest products industry. This is its first ever power list.

Greenpeace Forests Campaign Coordinator Richard Brooks

RISI cites Richard for bringing global attention to Canada's Boreal Forest. He ranks 14th. Executives from the world's largest forestry companies make up most of the list. Richard, who has a Masters in Forest Conservation from the University of Toronto, helped launch Greenpeace's Boreal Forest campaign when he began working for Greenpeace five years ago. In September 2006, he became coordinator of Greenpeace's team of forest campaigners across the country.

The first recent cause for celebration at Greenpeace was the announcement by AbitibiBowater, the largest forestry company in Canada, that it will no longer log in one million hectares of the traditional area of the Grassy Narrows First Nation in northwestern Ontario. AbitibiBowater's decision came after major customers cancelled contracts with the company.

Next came the promise by the Ontario government that it intends to protect half the Boreal Forest in the province. Again, this is victory comes after years of hard work by First Nations and environmental groups, including Greenpeace. More work still needs to be done to protect the southern Boreal.

Now, there is growing concern about the intention of a company to log intact valleys of Clayoquot Sound. Protests by Greenpeace and other groups led to a halt in logging in these valleys Clayoquot in 1993.

Greenpeace will provide more information on its efforts to protect Clayoquot Sound as they develop.

Here is the text of Richard's citation on the RISI site:

14. Richard Brooks, Greenpeace A group of citizens came together in 1971 to create Greenpeace. Their mission was to protest US nuclear testing off the coast of Alaska. These activists made history by bringing worldwide attention to the dangers of nuclear testing. The focus of the organization has now turned to other environmental issues, including targeting Kimberly Clark for their unwillingness to create a fiber policy that increases the use of recycled fiber. Richard Brooks is the coordinator of Greenpeace's forest campaign in Canada, which aims to preserve intact forest areas, implement sustainable forestry and transform the forest products industry. He and his team have leveraged Greenpeace's unique brand of markets mobilization and direct action campaigning to pressure some of the largest forest product companies in the world. Richard has brought international attention to the globally important Boreal Forest and the role that the pulp and paper sector plays in deciding its future.

Full details on the RISI list are available online.