The growing world demand of wood and its products, make the trade of wood which is illegally used an international problem which requires global responses taking into account not only the trade regulation of this product but also the social, political and economic aspects in order to improve the rules of the wood-producing countries.
PEFC certification allows the companies in the supply chain to guarantee their customer the legal and sustainable origin of certified forestry products.
Porto de Brens
Cee is the industrial heart in Costa da Morte thanks to its port, which makes the transport of goods and raw materials easier.
According the official data of 2019, Brens port is the third Galician port moving goods, with a total of 203.344 tons; after Cariño and Ribadeo, which move around 593.997 and 417.403 tons a year respectively. At the beginning, fish and floor transport was the most important. Nowadays, coke is the main product, followed by ferro-alloy and manganese minerals. This is related to the company Ferroatlántica, which easily recognised since it is directly connected with the port and it is near the Camino de Fisterra. It is the owner of the hydro-electric power plant of Xallas river (included the Fervenza´s reservoir which you could see from Corzón lookout) and it is the first world producer of silicon metal and ferro-alloy, covering the 15 % of international market.
The transport of eucalyptus and pine wood is other activity in Brens, but less important. Wood is mainly devoted to the paper industry and, specially, to the Portuguese company: PORTUCEL.
Galician forestry sector has increased its exportation figures in the last years thanks to the sustained increase in its traditional destinations and to obtain new markets outside the euro zone. The mainly exported products are Paper pulp (42%) and wood manufactures (37%). Raw wood and sawn wood means the 11% and furniture the 10%. The main chain of wood transformation is about 2% of Galician economy talking about added value, while, talking about employment it is a 2,3%, and industrial employment is 12,3%.
The mankind had a long road to get a medium which was easy to obtain, store and which lasted long where they could express their concerns and knowledge. Stone, wood, metal and clay were some of the ones used till they manufactured paper.
Paper is the only natural, renewable and recyclable product.
There is a type of paper for every necessity: to communicate, to create art and culture, to cover hygienic and health necessities, to distribute, store and transport all type of goods…
Paper is made with the cellulose fibres found in wood.
Initially, the fibres joined by lignin (similar to glue) are separated, “moendo” (grinding) the wood or dissolving the glue with heat and chemical products. To manufacture paper, the cellulose fibres (unspoilt or recycled) are mixed with water in a big container called “pulper, and this mixture goes to the paper machine, laying it in a long band moved by small wheels. Then the water is extracted through different methods: gravity, cast, pressure and drying, finally getting a big sheet of paper, which is rolled up to form a coil.
In Galicia, the main paper factory is the biofactory of Ence, one of the few factories in Europe which produces paper pulp totally free of chlorine (TCF) from eucalyptus wood and energy coming from forestry biomass. In 2020, the 78,3% of wood entries in the factory had a sustainable forestry management certification. More than 96% of its manufacture is exported, and finally made into tissue paper and other paper applications by its customers.
Other points of interest
You can visit in the village the Virxe da Xunqueira Church, with a gotic style. The oral tradition tells that the virgin arrived there by the sea and she was found among the rushes, that is why it is called that way (Xunqueira: rushes). It is a similar legend to the one about Santo Cristo of Fisterra or Nosa Señora da Barca in Muxía.
Castelo do Príncipe is also interesting because of its battery in the coast, built in the S XVIII in order to defend the stuary of potential attacks by sea. If you go there you will understand the reason of its specific, since you could approach without being seeing; moreover, it was facing the Castelo do Cardeal, in the council of Corcubión, so they could avoid any entrance thanks to their exchange of fire of their cannons.
Walk around the village and you will see different public structures made of wood, as well as most of the street furniture!
The role of PEFC
The use and international trade of wood has two requirement levels, legality and sustainability.
Governments of all over the world promoted a law designed to guarantee legal wood trade and reject the entrance in the market of forestry products with illegal origin. Some of these regulations are the European Wood Regulation (Regulamento Europeo da Madeira) (EUTR) or the Lacey Law of the USA. The certification of the PEFC Chain Custody is designed to show that all these requirements are fulfilled.
PEFC demands through its Chain of Custody Regulation, that organizations implement a Due Diligence System (SDD) in order to help make sure that their activities meet the requirements requested by the applicable law regarding wood legality, including commercial and customs laws, and also to reduce the risk of forestry material acquired coming from conflict sources. SDD establishes a procedural framework, measures, collection of information, risk assessment and its mitigation.
PEFC forestry certification is a guarantee of legal and sustainable use of wood and any other forestry product.