Transnational Environmental Governance through Market Blocking and Supply Chain Leveraging
After the 1992 U.N. Conference on Environment and Development failed to establish an effective international forest governance system, many environmental activists turned toward markets – or more precisely, toward commandeering market forces to help protect forests. They did this in two ways. The first was to establish a non-state labeling program for sustainably produced timber, the Forest Stewardship Council. It was leveraged into effectiveness by threatening major wood products retailers with brand damage if they did not commit to preferring FSC labeled products, and has had a very significant influence on forest governance. The second was to promote timber legality requirements in developed country markets. In the past five years the U.S. and the E.U. have adopted laws requiring that all wood products sold in their markets have been legally harvested in their place of origin. Australia recently followed suit. This paper seeks to describe the ongoing reconfiguration of transnational forest governance by tracing changing actors and interaction patterns in agenda setting, rule making, implementation, monitoring, enforcement and evaluation.