Consultation on minor update and extension of the validity of the Regional Risk Assessment for Estonia

SBP has today opened a public consultation on a minor update and extension of the validity of the Regional Risk Assessment (RRA) for Estonia. Interested parties are invited to provide written comments.

In accordance with the SBP RRA Procedure, SBP-endorsed RRAs remain valid for a period of five years from the approval date. In April 2021, the RRA for Estonia reached the end of its validity. In the light of the ongoing Standards Development, SBP has decided to conduct a minor update of the RRA for Estonia focusing on several indicators where new data has become available. The Working Body (WB) responsible for conducting the original RRA, Preferred by Nature (formerly NEPCon), was assigned to undertake the update.

Since the validity of the original RRA has expired but the minor update is still in progress, the validity may be extended for up to six months in accordance with the SBP RRA Procedure, Clause 7.1.4a). Therefore, the original RRA will remain valid until the minor update has been completed or six months has expired, whichever comes first.

SBP is seeking stakeholder feedback on the proposal to make minor updates to the existing SBP-endorsed RRA for Estonia and extend its validity to coincide with the end of the transition period for the revised SBP Standards (v2.0) that are being developed as part of the Standards Development Process.

Once the revised Standards are published there will be a transition period allowing time for Certificate Holders to comply with the revised requirements. From the end of that transition period it will be mandatory for all Certificate Holders to comply with the revised requirements. The RRAs will require updating in line with the revised Standards and that will be undertaken in a timely fashion within the same transition period, such that complying with the requirements of the updated RRAs will also be mandatory from the end of the transition period.

The consultation draft RRA may be viewed at: https://sbp-cert.org/documents/consultation-documents/live-consultations/minor-update-and-extension-of-the-validity-of-the-regional-risk-assessment-for-estonia/. Interested parties are invited to provide written comments to info@sbp-cert.org by the close of business on Friday, 16 July 2021.

SBP Publishes Updated Regional Risk Assessment for Lithuania

SBP has published the updated Regional Risk Assessment (RRA) for Lithuania. RRAs are a key part of SBP’s focus on identifying and mitigating any risks associated with sourcing feedstock for woody biomass pellet and chip production.

In accordance with the SBP RRA Procedure, SBP-endorsed RRAs remain valid for a period of five years from the approval date. The RRA for Lithuania was first published on 15 June 2016 and consequently its validity expired on 14 June 2021.

The Standards Development Process currently underway is reviewing each of the SBP Standards. Standard 1 is the foundation of the SBP RRAs and any revisions to that Standard will trigger the need to update all existing SBP-endorsed RRAs.

Following publication of the revised Standards, scheduled for the end of 2021, there will be a transition period allowing time for Certificate Holders to comply with the revised requirements. From the end of that transition period it will be mandatory for all Certificate Holders to comply with the revised requirements. The RRAs will require updating in line with the revised Standards and that will be undertaken in a timely fashion within the same transition period, such that complying with the requirements of the updated RRAs will also be mandatory from the end of the transition period.

In the light of the Standards Development Process it was proposed to extend the validity of the RRA for Lithuania to coincide with the end of the transition period for the revised SBP Standards (v2.0). SBP consulted Preferred by Nature (formerly NEPCon), the Working Body responsible for developing the original RRA for Lithuania, on the proposal to extend its validity. On the basis that there have been no major changes in relevant legislation and/or forestry practices, and that there is no additional information to suggest otherwise, Preferred by Nature has recommended that no changes are made to the risk designations of the original RRA. It was, therefore, proposed to extend the validity of the RRA without further revision.

In early 2021, SBP sought stakeholder feedback on the proposal. Extension of the validity was subsequently recommended by the SBP Technical Committee and formally approved by the SBP Chief Executive Officer. A response to consultation has been published alongside the updated RRA; both documents may be viewed at: https://sbp-cert.org/documents/standards-documents/risk-assessments/lithuania/.

SBP Launches Public Consultation on Revision Draft v1 of Standards 1 and 2

The Sustainable Biomass Program (SBP) has today launched its public consultation on Revision Draft v1 of Standards 1 and 2.

Our Standards Development Process is designed to facilitate an open, inclusive and constructive sharing of views amongst our stakeholder community. This first public consultation on Revision Draft v1 of Standards 1 and 2 follows the public consultation on Standard 3 to 6 and is the outcome of many hours of stakeholder participation.

An Explanatory Note accompanies each of the Standards providing background and details on the proposed revisions to the Standard, including adaptations of the requirements and their structure, as well as raising some specific questions. Please read the Explanatory Notes before providing feedback.

In this public consultation, SBP is seeking stakeholder feedback on the Revision Draft v1 of:

• Standard 1: Feedstock Compliance
• Standard 2: Feedstock Verification

Stakeholders are invited to provide feedback on the Standards as a whole or to limit their comments to specific sections.

All documents are available via the Feedback Platform, please use the platform to provide your feedback and comments. The consultation closes on Monday, 2 August 2021.