指導者 / 總編輯 張蕙娟 分享者 / 董侑霖
就在4月22日地球日之前，蘋果公司與自然保護基金會(The Conservation Fund)簽署了一份極具意義的協議，來保護美國的工作森林(備註1)，透過這個協議，蘋果公司能管理緬因州及北卡羅萊納州超過36000畝的兩片森林，面積甚至大過了舊金山和2.5倍的曼哈頓。
這片工作森林除了提供木材用於建設計劃和紙張及包裝上的使用外，身為森林的永久擁有者，更重要的是要實踐永續維護林業及遵守自然保護基金會的工作森林基金(Working Forest Fund)的相關規範。蘋果公司也可因此切割中間商，得到更多直接管理供應鏈的能力，實踐永續發展。
美國有超過7.5億英畝的森林，其中4.2億英畝為私人擁有的「工作森林」，Lisa Jackson指出，美國的工作森林正暴露在嚴重的風險下，並提到：「這個協議是雙方互利的合作關係，這兩座森林一年能生產的紙張纖維，接近於去年用在iPhone、iPad、iPod、Mac和Apple TV包裝上的原生纖維一半產量。」
備註1：工作森林Working forest─用來維護生態系統而積極被保護的森林，也能夠被拿來被製成產品，多為家庭或投資者私有。(參考Conservation Fund官網)
Just days ahead of Earth Day, Apple has signed a landmark agreement with the Conservation Fund to protect America’s working forests by acquiring two of them.
The conservation commitment will see Apple manage more than 36,000 acres of forest lands in Maine—where Rachel Carson‘s legacy as an environmentalist is enshrined in a wildlife refuge—and North Carolina, or a combined land mass that is larger than San Francisco and 2.5 times the size of Manhattan.
As the permanent owner and, more importantly, steward of these “working” forests that will provide timber for its construction projects and fiber for its paper and packaging, Apple is committing to sustainable forestry practices and to abide by the terms of the Conservation Fund’s Working Forest Fund (WFF). It’s also gaining more direct control of its supply chain and its ability to implement its sustainability standards by cutting out the middleman.
“Apple is clearly leading by example—one that we hope others will follow,” said Larry Selzer, president and CEO of The Conservation Fund of its biggest private sector partner to date. “By all accounts, the loss of America’s working forests is one of our nation’s greatest environmental challenges. The initiative announced today is precedent-setting.”
“The Beginning of a Worldwide Effort”
Lisa Jackson, the former head of the EPA and Apple’s VP of environmental initiatives (who also oversaw a major solar power deal in China this week), stated in a blog post on Medium that the move is part of a bigger plan to make sustainable forestry a stronger part of the company’s environmental efforts and supply chain strategy.
“Apple is going beyond simply purchasing renewable resources to actually protecting and increasing the acreage of sustainably managed working forests,” Jackson wrote. “For Apple, this is the beginning of a worldwide effort, one that represents a new approach as it reassesses its impact on the world’s paper supply chain. Apple believes that paper, like energy, can be a renewable resource.”
Out of 750 million acres of U.S. forests, more than 420 million acres are “working” forest and privately-held, and subject to short-term financial interests.
Noting that America’s working forests are “at grave risk,” Jackson outlined that the specifics of the partnership, which she called “mutually beneficial,” and noted that “the collective annual production of paper fiber from these two forests is equivalent to nearly half of the virgin fiber that went into iPhone, iPad, iPod, Mac, and Apple TV packaging last year.”
As Jackson put it, “Solving this conservation challenge requires some of our most innovative thinking. Business and conservation must work hand in hand.”