A Maine-based nonprofit has been selected to promote a professional logging program throughout the country.

The Trust to Conserve Northeast Forestlands in Augusta has been selected by the American Loggers Council to promote its Master Logger certification program to logging companies. The program certifies loggers who harvest wood using professional, safe and sustainable methods, and provides third-party auditors to make sure the standards are enforced.

The Master Logger program was developed in Maine in 2000 by the Professional Logging Contractors of Maine. Since then, it has been adopted by 18 other states, according to the American Loggers Council.

The standards are a rigorous set of environmental and social benchmarks that include water and soil quality, employee safety and business viability. In the Northeast, the Rainforest Alliance of Vermont is the third-party auditor.

“While it may be generally unknown to the public, landowners large and small are increasingly seeking Master Loggers for harvests on their property, and many end users of wood are also seeking its assurances that the wood they are buying is being harvested sustainably and responsibly,” the council said.

The trust expects to revitalize the Master Logger program by meeting with members, standardizing the branding and marketing of the program, and providing technical support and outreach to other states.

Clarification: This story was updated at 5:27 p.m. on Aug. 15, 2017 to clarify that the program certifies loggers.

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