Real Wood Floors: Protecting Our World's Forests

    ST. LOUIS, Feb. 16 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A lot of focus has been
directed toward the destruction of the world's forests during the past few
decades.  The truth is that deforestation is happening with alarming
frequency.  Millions of acres of forest land are harvested illegally
throughout the world every year, which contributes significantly to global
warming and the destruction of wildlife habitat.  Because this activity
adversely affects our environment, the National Wood Flooring Association
worked diligently with several key organizations to promote the illegal
logging ban with Congress.  The ban was passed this past summer as an
amendment to the US Lacey Act, which originally was mandated more than 100
years ago to prohibit the illegal trafficking of wildlife.  This new amendment
has expanded the Lacey Act to include wood and wood products.  Specifically,
the ban prohibits the import, sale or trade in the US of wood and other forest
products that are harvested through illegal means.

    This legislation is significant for a number of reasons.  First, and most
importantly, it protects our world's forests from irrecoverable loss of trees
and wildlife habitat.  Second, it protects lumber buyers who verify the origin
of lumber when importing wood into the United States from other countries. 
Third, it eliminates the influx into the US of low-cost, low-quality wood
flooring produced from illegally harvested forests.

    The penalties for noncompliance with this new legislation are severe. 
Penalties can include the forfeiture of the illegally harvested material,
fines of up to $500,000, and jail time of up to five years.  From a consumer's
perspective, however, the ban helps you have confidence that the wood you are
buying is not depleting our world's forests.

    The NWFA is a not-for-profit trade organization of more than 4,000 wood
flooring professionals working worldwide to educate consumers, architects,
designers, and builders in the uses and benefits of wood flooring.  The NWFA
can be contacted at 111 Chesterfield Industrial Blvd., Chesterfield, MO 63005,
or at 800-422-4556 (USA), 800-848-8824 (Canada), or 636-519-9663 (local and

    CONTACT: Anita Howard
    Communications Director


For further information:

For further information: Anita Howard, Communications Director, National
Wood Flooring Association, +1-636-519-9663, Web Site:

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