PEFC members invited to comment on changes to the endorsement process
21 April 2017 Endorsement
As more and more countries join the PEFC family, we need to ensure our endorsement process can handle this growing number of assessments – all while ensuring it loses none of its rigour.
Future-proofing our endorsement process is therefore our aim as we revise the document governing this process.
The members of Working Group 6, the body responsible for the revision of this guidance document, have reached consensus on the enquiry draft. This means it is now time for our members to have their say through our thirty-day member consultation.
Our members have until 21 May 2017 to give their feedback on this critical document!
So what has changed?
The most important changes are:
Increasing stakeholder engagement in the international consultation
At the start of an international consultation there will be a webinar for the national member to introduce their system or highlight the changes made to a revised system. This additional step aims to encourage a higher level of interest from stakeholders and increase participation in the international process.
Streamlining the assessment of already endorsed systems
The first assessment of a non-endorsed national system remains a full assessment. However, if there are no issues with the system or the first assessment, the assessment of a revised endorsed system can focus on the introduced changes. This new approach better recognizes the previous assessment results and can save valuable time and resources.
Aligning the endorsement process with the national standard setting process
In line with developments in Working Group 3 on standard setting, the endorsement process is set to become more aligned with the national process. A national review/revision process starts five years after the national approval of a standard and from then can take many months to finish. As it stands now, the endorsement validity of five years does not match this national process.
From expiring endorsements to continuous monitoring
With the new approach, the endorsement no longer has an expiry date. Instead, the national system will be monitored continuously. Specific ‘endorsement milestones’ need to be met in order to maintain the endorsement. The endorsement can be ended automatically when an endorsement milestone is not met. An important milestone is the timely start of the periodic review, within five years after the standard’s formal approval date.
The working group will consider all of our member’s comments and make the necessary changes to the document. This will result in the final draft version of the guidance. Once the working group reached consensus on the final draft it will be send to the PEFC International Board of Directors for formal approval.