You’ve given each country and source type a score. What does the score mean?
The score is a measure of the number of areas of law that are at risk of being broken. The lower the score, the more widespread the risks of illegality in the country.
If there are different risks for different timber source types in a country, we present a separate score for each source type. By ‘source type’ we mean different types and locations of forest – for example
- plantation or natural forest
- geographical location of the forest
- protected or production forest
- private or state owned forest
- forest managed by the private sector or by the state.
For example, if there is are different risks of illegality in one part of the country than other, as is true in Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak, then we present separate scores for each region.
We have deliberately not ranked countries according to their scores because the scores do not provide an accurate basis for comparing individual countries. This is because we identify whether particular laws are at risk of being broken; we do not measure the volume of timber affected by that risk.
How do you calculate the scores?
We have tried to come up with a fair score for each country that best reflects how widespread the risk of illegality is. For each different timber source type in a country, we award:
- 1 point for each area of law where there is a low risk of illegality.
- 0 points for each area of law where there is an identified risk of illegality. We call identified risks of illegality ‘specified risks’, in line with the terminology used by the Forest Stewardship Council.
We then total up the number of areas of law that are applicable to that timber source type in that country. This is because not all countries have laws on their books relating to all the categories we have examined.
We then calculate the score for the timber source type as a percentage: the number of points out of the total number of applicable laws.
To calculate the country score, we take an average (a mean) of all the different timber source type scores in the country.
For example, imagine a country where there are two timber source types: timber from natural forest and timber from plantations. There are more risks associated with timber from natural forests. You might have:
- For the natural forest source type:
- Number of legal areas identified as being at low risk of being broken: 8
- Number of applicable legal areas: 20. This is one less than the total number of legal areas because there is no legislation in this country requiring companies to obtain free, prior and informed consent
- Therefore the score for natural forests is 8/20 X 100 = 40
- For the plantation source type:
- Number of legal areas identified as being at low risk of being broken: 10
- Number of applicable legal areas: 20, as above
- Therefore the score for plantations: is 10/20 X 100 = 50
There are two source types in this country, therefore the overall country score is an average (mean) of 40 and 50, which is 45.