Activists take the message "Ban illegal timber" to the EU Commission Headquarters.
Acclaimed Brazilian artist Siron Franco has installed nine video
monitors into the trunk of an Amazon tree that comes from an area
in Brazil where illegal logging is rampant. The tree has been
placed outside the European Commission's headquarters and contrasts
images of the natural beauty of the rainforest with the ongoing
destruction caused by illegal logging.
The installation is part of our ongoing campaign to force the EU
to introduce a new timber law. This would see a long overdue ban on
illegal timber being sold in the EU.
EU Environment Commissioner, Stavros Dimas, and other EU
politicians are planning to visit the tree, where our activists
will present them with a plywood postcard reading: 'Stop the
chainsaw massacre! Adopt EU timber law now' to remind them why it
is vital to protect the world's last remaining rainforests.
At the moment, Europe buys millions of tonnes of timber from
areas such as the Amazon, South East Asia and the Congo, where
illegal and destructive logging is rampant. As a result, customers
in Europe, buying products like garden furniture, paper tissues,
and construction materials, are unwitting accomplices in the
destruction of the world's forests.
For the last five years, the EU has been promising to introduce
new laws against illegally harvested timber, but those companies
profiteering from illegal logging have been obstructing the efforts
being made by the European Commission. However, on July 23, the
European Commission will finally vote on whether to adopt a new
The fact is that the European Commission hasn't got much choice
if it is serious about tackling climate change. We urgently need to
stop destroying the world's forests. Practices such as illegal and
destructive logging drive deforestation, which in turns leads to
the dramatic loss of species and accounts for one fifth of global
greenhouse gas emissions.
Of course, our supporters have been instrumental in making sure
that the issue hasn't fallen off of the Commission's agenda. Since
June 17, over
65,000 letters have been sent to the EU President, José Manuel
Barroso. Progressive companies working in the timber industry have
also been pushing for the new law - they are suffering at the hands
of rogue businesses involved in illegal and destructive logging who
undercut prices, make sustainable wood less competitive and harm
the industry as a whole.
The EU already has strict controls on illegal music, software
and films. It's high time timber stolen from the world's last
rainforests was just as strictly controlled as pirate CDs.
Please write to President Barroso today for a strong EU timber law.
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