About the Guidebook

The Guidebook Investigating Illegal Timber provides clear instructions on how anyone can play a part in investigating illegal timber supply chains. It includes detailed guidance on the sources of information and tools that can be used to find out if timber is being illegal harvested, traded and sold to sensitive markets.

The Guidebook is available in English, French, Spanish and Indonesian. It can be downloaded and printed as an illustrated PDF file, or read directly on this website.

Some of the topics it covers include:

  • The different kinds of illegalities which exist and how to detect them
  • How to obtain and analyse permit information on companies cutting forests
  • How to use satellite images to discover where forests are being cleared
  • How fieldwork can be used to document different kinds of illegality
  • Tracing timber from the forest to the market, including overseas
  • A large range of case studies, highlighting how successful investigations have been carried out
  • An exploration of the new technologies that can be used in investigations

The guidebook can be used by individuals or organisations at different stages of the supply chain. The following links can be used to navigate directly to points of interest that may be most applicable to you:

  • Click here if you want to find out how to identify illegal harvesting
  • Click here if you want to investigate trade in timber within the source country
  • Click here if you are based in the EU or US and want to investigate illegal timber being imported into your country of interest

If you have strong information but cannot complete an investigation, or want more guidance on where to start, further support is available.  Click here to find out what support can be provided to you or your organisation.

To download a low-resolution PDF of the Guidebook click on this link: Investigating Illegal Timber.