World Rainforest Movement

South Africa: Letter for the de-certification of FSC certified plantations in South Africa

We the undersigned wish to register our concern over the certification of tree plantations by the FSC, which has granted a green label to monoculture plantations that have proven to be socially and environmentally destructive.

We are aware that the FSC is carrying out a review of its plantation certification policy, and it is our hope that the result of this process will be an end to the certification of these types of plantations by the FSC in the future.

Nevertheless, the fact remains that the FSC has already certified large areas of monoculture tree plantations in South Africa, and we believe that their certification should be re-assessed as part of the current review process in order to determine whether they deserve to keep the FSC label.

There are well-documented cases of plantations that never should have received this label and clearly merit de-certification.

As proof that the current review process is genuinely aimed at a profound change in plantation policy, environmental and community based organizations world wide are calling for the immediate de-certification of industrial timber plantations that blatantly violate the FSC’s mission.

We therefore demand the immediate de-certification of all industrial timber plantations in South Africa which have been inappropriately certified by the FSC.

There are 24 FSC certificates in South Africa, and a total area of 1.665.418 ha certified. Some of the largest certified companies include Global Forest Products, Komatiland Forests, Mondi, NCT Forestry and Sappi Forests. For a complete list visit


Philip Owen

GeaSphere S,A,


Glen Ashton

Ekogaia Foundation

Cape Town, S.A.


Patrick Bond

Professor, University of KwaZulu-Natal School of Development Studies and Director, Centre for Civil Society

Durban, S.A.


David Hallowes

Grahamstown, SA.


Francis Darvell

Five Assegais Country Estate

Machadodorp, S.A.


Wally Menne

TimberWatch Coalition

Durban, S.A.


Desmond D’Sa

SDCEA Chairperson

Durban, S.A.


Prof. A.E. van Wyk

Department of Botany

University of Pretoria, S.A.


George Dor

Jubilee S.A.



Eben Cilliers


Nelspruit, S.A.


Dr Bob de Laborde

Hilton, S.A.


Nicole Hemphill


Nelspruit, S.A.


Bobby Peek


Pietermaritzburg, S.A.


Vera Ribeiro

GeaSphere Mozambique

Maputo, Mozambique


Sandile Ndawonde

Green Network

PieterMaritzburg, S.A.


Owen Wiggins

Nelspruit, SA


David Fig

Johannesburg, S.A.


Liane Greeff

Environmental Monitoring Group

Cape Town, S.A.


Fred Daniel

Nkomazi Wilderness

Badplaas, S.A.


Bryan Ashe

Earthlife Africa eThekwini

Durban, S.A.


Jean Moore


Durban, South Africa


Cecil Moore

WESSA Durban Branch

Durban, RSA


Christina Potgieter

NU Herbarium, University of KwaZulu-Natal,

Pietermaritzburg, S.A.


Peter Hitchins

Meerensee, S.A.


Harald Witt (PhD)

University of KwaZulu-Natal

Durban, S.A.


Stephan Schoeman

Nelspruit, S.A.


Rose Williams

Durban, S.A.


John Blessing Karumbidza

Timberwatch Coalition



Peter Hitchins

Meerensee, S.A.


Leigh Voight

Schagen, S.A.


Philip and Laura-ann Keates

Kilmorna Manor

Schoemanskloof, S.A.


Muzi Mdamba

Empangeni, S.A.


Anabela Lemos

Director, JA! Justica Ambiental

Maputo, Mozambique


Patrick Dowling


Cape Town, S.A.


Prof Ben C W van der Waal

Department of Biological Sciences

University of Venda, Thohoyandou, S.A.


Helen Duigan

Rhenosterspruit Conservancy

Gauteng, S.A.



Parkmore, S.A..