>From: Global Response <email@example.com>
>Dear Members of Global Response's Quick Response Network:
>Great news from Rainforest Action Network! The campaign to stop purchasing
>of wood and wood products from ancient forests just scored another victory!
> The ball started rolling 2 years ago when The Home Depot announced a
>phase-out of purchasing from ancient forests -- Global Response members
>shared credit for that victory with our Home Depot letter campaign (GR
>#4/98). Rainforest Action Network continues to press other wood products
>retailers and home builders to stop buying ancient forest destruction. The
>successes of this campaign are significant and inspiring!
>For Immediate Release
>August 8, 2000
>Contacts: Brian Peace 336-658-4170
>Chris Ahearn 336-658-7387
>Lowe's Unveils Unprecedented Business Initiative
>To Help Protect World's Forests
>-- Collaboration with Environmentalists and Wood Suppliers
>Sets Company as Global Leader in Responsible Wood Sourcing -
>-- Company Creates Healthy Forests Advisory Board --
>WILKESBORO, N.C. -- Lowe's Companies, Inc., the world's second largest home
>improvement retailer, today released the details of its landmark lumber and
>wood product procurement policy aimed at helping protect the world's
>threatened forests. The company has committed to overhaul the sourcing of
>lumber and wood in the products it sells while proactively engaging its
>suppliers and governments to take immediate steps towards the permanent
>protection of critical forest areas.
>"Our new environmental policy represents a major victory for the forests
>our customers," said Bob Tillman, Lowe's chairman and CEO. "Our customers
>expect Lowe's to deliver the best quality lumber and wood products that
>been responsibly harvested and produced by our suppliers."
>"In developing our policy, Lowe's pursued what some in the industry may
>consider an unconventional approach," added Mark Kauffman, Lowe's senior
>vice president of Merchandising. "We worked closely with the environmental
>and scientific communities as well as our suppliers and facilitated a
>of first-ever meetings between these groups."
>Today's announcement is the culmination of a multi-stepped corporate
>initiative to bring together environmental organizations, including
>Rainforest Action Network and the World Resources Institute (WRI), wood
>suppliers, governments and industry organizations. Lowe's has taken an
>active role in encouraging industry and government negotiations with groups
>working to protect endangered forests in areas including the Pacific
>Northwest, British Columbia and the Southeastern U.S.
>"The end result was a more balanced policy and what we hope will be a major
>turning point for environmental discussions in the U.S.," added Kauffman.
>Under the Environmental Policy, Lowe's will:
>Aggressively phase out the purchase of wood products from endangered
>as these areas are identified and mapped. This includes an immediate ban on
>wood coming from the Great Bear Rainforest of British Columbia;
>Work with suppliers to encourage the maintenance of natural forests and
>environmentally responsible forest practices;
>Give preference to the procurement of wood products from independently
>certified well-managed forests. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is
>currently the company's preferred certification system, and FSC
>certification will be given preference over other certification systems;
>Work with our customers to increase the efficiency of wood use, including
>the promotion of wood reuse, recycling and advanced framing techniques;
>Work with our suppliers to increase the procurement of quality recycled,
>engineered and alternative products (when their environmental benefits are
>clearly demonstrated), including alternative fiber and tree-free paper
>products for printing and packaging.
>Lowe's has already taken a number of important steps to become the industry
>leader in implementing responsible wood purchasing. The company recently
>eliminated ramin dowels sourced from Indonesia from its inventory and
>converted to a domestic poplar species.
>Lowe's also announced the formation of a "Healthy Forests Advisory Board,"
>which will help guide the company through its policy implementation process
>and provide counsel on general forestry issues. The Advisory Board will
>include environmental groups, environmental scientists, suppliers,
>certifiers and buyer groups. The Board's first actions will be to address a
>number of on-going environmental issues, such as the conversion of Southern
>forests to pine plantations, commercial logging in U.S. National Forests
>illegal logging concerns in certain foreign countries.
>With 1999 sales of $15.9 billion, Lowe's Companies, Inc. is the world's
>second largest home improvement retailer. Headquartered in Wilkesboro,
>Lowe's is the 15th largest retailer in the U.S. as well as the 34th largest
>retailer worldwide. Lowe's and its 100,000 employees are Improving Home
>Improvement for nearly five million do-it-yourself retail and commercial
>business customers each week at more than 600 stores in 39 states. For
>information, visit lowes.com.
>- 30 -
>Rainforest Action Network
>Contact: Michael Brune, Shannon Wright
> 415/398-4404; 415-596-RAIN (mobile)
>DO-IT-YOURSELF INDUSTRY LEADER DISCLOSES SWEEPING CHANGES IN WOOD-BUYING
>LOWE'S 'UNCONVENTIONAL APPROACH' MAY HELP SECURE PROTECTION FOR WORLD'S
>REMAINING ENDANGERED FORESTS
>North Wilkesboro, NC-In a move with far-reaching implications for the
>product industry, Lowe's Companies, Inc., today revealed its new wood
>product procurement policy that will dramatically alter the way the company
>does business. The policy by the world's second largest home improvement
>retailer includes detailed provisions for protection of endangered forests,
>such as an immediate ban on wood from the Great Bear Rainforest of British
>Columbia. The initiative also addresses critical domestic forest issues
>such as logging of National Forests and conversion of native forests to
>plantations, among other issues.
>"Lowe's has set the global standard for responsible wood buying." stated
>Michael Brune, Old Growth Campaign Director for Rainforest Action Network
>(RAN). "The end of old growth logging may soon be within our grasp, thanks
>in part to leadership from Lowe's."
>Lowe's five point policy includes an aggressive phase out of wood from
>endangered forests, a strong purchasing preference for wood that is
>independently certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) as coming
>from well-managed forests, and commitment to engage with suppliers to
>improve logging practices and to maintain native forests. Many of these
>initiatives are currently underway. For example, Lowe's has already
>eliminated ramin dowels derived from endangered tropical forests in
>"We applaud Lowe's for showing uncommon courage and decisiveness in using
>its purchasing power to leverage change within the logging industry," added
>RAN's Brune. "Industry stalwarts such as Boise Cascade that don't meet the
>challenges set by Lowe's, will be branded as corporate dinosaurs, unable
>adapt in the new marketplace."
>Today's announcement comes after months of communication with forest
>advocacy organizations, including Rainforest Action Network and the World
>Resources Institute. In recent months Lowe's has shown unique persistence
>in encouraging industry and government representatives to work with
>scientists and environmentalists to create solutions to the problems posed
>by unsustainable logging.
>It is estimated that nearly three quarters of the world's old growth
>have been logged or degraded, much within the past three decades.
>Rainforest Action Network (RAN) has worked with several dozen major
>corporations to help them redirect wood purchases towards sustainable
>sources. World Resources Institute (WRI) operates Global Forest Watch, a
>non-profit agency working to map the world's remaining intact and
>forests. Lowe's has worked with the Dogwood Alliance to further examine
>unsustainable logging practices in the Southeastern U.S., with
>Investigation Agency (EIA) on ramin dowel sourcing, and with Natural
>Resources Defense Council on forest certification issues.
># # #
>Old Growth Forest Campaigner
>Rainforest Action Network
>221 Pine St., Suite 500
>San Francisco, CA 94104
>"The difference between what we do and what we are capable of doing would
>suffice to solve most of the world's problems"
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