Friday, December 21, 2012

Closing out 2012 with 200 million acres - A Banner Year for SFI Inc.

Dear SFI Program Participants and Community,

As the year 2012 comes to a close, there is much to celebrate in the SFI community. Just this week we set a new record that reinforces our position as the largest single forest certification standard in the world.  With 200 million acres now certified to the SFI forest management standard, which is roughly the size of California and Newfoundland/Labrador combined, we know we are influencing responsible forestry on a significant scale.  Growth continues in certifications to the SFI fiber sourcing and chain-of-custody standards. We know the supply chain is embracing SFI, from the forests through to the end user, because this year alone we have had companies, government agencies, conservation groups and others come to us 6,000 times with requests to use the SFI on-product label.  Six years ago, we could count the use of SFI labels on two hands.  However, the number of acres, certificates and label use requests pales in comparison to our collective accomplishments in our forests and in our communities.  SFI is more than a Standard; it is an action-oriented sustainable forestry initiative.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Truck-Related Fatalities Edge Up

The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has reported that truck-involved fatalities increased, in absolute terms, by 1.9% in 2011 over 2010, from 3,686 to 3,757, even as total highway-accident fatalities declined over the same period, also by 1.9%, to 32,367. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration was anticipating that truck-related fatalities would decline by 5% during that period, based on preliminary figures, and was preparing to attribute the decline to the effectiveness of its Compliance, Safety, Accountability (CSA) program. However, the actual figures seem to undercut that point.

It may be relevant to this trend that the American Trucking Associations has pointed out that fleets are recently tending to prefer new drivers to experienced ones, because their CSA scores lack demerits. Commenting on the specific 2011 data, however, ATA observes that “even with this increase and the slight increase last year, trucking is experiencing its safest three-year record since NHTSA began keeping records in 1975.”