GLAND, Switzerland—The World Wildlife Fund is commending Michelin for adopting a “zero deforestation sustainability” policy regarding natural rubber and is urging other tire makers and users of NR to consider similar positions.
Michelin's policy, disclosed recently, focuses on eliminating deforestation and addresses human and labor rights, supply chain transparency, community farm development and tire efficiency.
The company, one of the world's largest buyers of NR, has begun tracing its whole supply chain and advising its NR suppliers to get in compliance with its new policy, according to the WWF.
An important first step to making NR production sustainable is to develop responsibly managed plantations on degraded land with full consent by tenure-holding local communities, Michelin said, instead of grabbing land and clearing high quality natural forests.
Michelin's policy is:
“Our vision is to consider sustainable natural rubber as a natural and responsible way to protect forests with high conservation value and high carbon stock, as well as foster other environmental services. This involves stakeholders in a participatory process of land use, while ensuring satisfactory production yield and improved livelihoods for local communities.”