All about our Association - Preserving Confidence in Timber
SOUTH AFRICAN WOOD PRESERVERS ASSOCIATION
The South African Wood Preservers Association (SAWPA) is a non-profit association formed in 1980, by the South African wood preserving industry, primarily to promote timber treatment and treated timber products. Commercially grown timber in Southern Africa is mainly of the Eucalyptus and Pinus species, both of which are not durable.
By applying the correct chemicals to these timbers we are able to ensure that the timber performs as if it were durable thereby giving predictable long life performance.
Who is Who
With different regions in the country experiencing different wood preservation problems, and the need to address these problems on a regional basis, SAWPA formed Regional Committees in the following areas:
• Kwa-Zulu Natal
• Southern / Eastern Cape
• Western Cape
• Gauteng / North West
These Committees were formed to debate amongst timber treaters and traders in treated timber. The Committees meet as often as necessary, and are free to invite other stakeholder organisations to attend their meetings.
As we meet the needs for our treaters by having Regional Committees, so too have we established a Chemical Forum for the needs of the chemical manufacturers/distributors of chemicals used in wood preservation. The organisations which are currently represented are:
• Arcelor Mittal Coke and Chemicals
• Arch Wood Protection (Arxada)
• Dolphin Bay Chemicals
• FFS Refiners
• Industrial Distillers & Refiners
• International Chemical Specialities
The Association is controlled through an Executive Committee, comprising a Chairman, Executive Director, 6 Regional Chairmen, a Chemical Forum Chairman and 2 Chemical Forum Representatives.
FUNDING / MEMBERSHIP
The Association is funded by treaters paying a percentage on purchases of chemicals. Class I Membership is limited to those organisations which treat timber or distribute chemicals. Class II Membership is available to those involved in the treatment industry e.g. users of treated timber.
We have Affiliate Membership for Universities, Educational Facilities, other Industry Associations, Certification bodies, Government Departments (DTIC, DFFE, etc.), Utility Bodies (Electricity and Telecommunications); all who have a vested interest in the treatment industry. Honorary membership is given to those individuals whom have reached the end of their careers and have made an outstanding contribution to the treatment industry.
To date, honorary membership had been awarded to six individuals.
A fundamental reason for SAWPA's existence is the requirement for the promotion of Timber Treatment and Treated Timber Products. This is being achieved through advertising, editorials, presentations etc. We have a mailing list of individuals and organisations to whom we are promoting our members' products and services i.e. architects, building inspectors, landscape architects, co-ops, town planners, quantity surveyors.
In addition to promoting the products and services which our members offer, we are now being called on to promote the standards in respect of which our members' products and services are offered. We are actively involved in changes to standards and legislation.
SOURCE OF INFORMATION
In terms of objectives, SAWPA is required to be a 'source of information for both the customer as well as our members.' Members receive a regular newsletter which alerts them to developments in the treating industry.
We are members of or maintain close relationships with the International Research Group on Wood Preservation (IRG-WP), the Western European Institute for Wood Preservation (WEI-IEO), the American Wood Protection Association (AWPA), The Wood Protection Association (UK), the Timber Preservers Association of Australia (TPAA) and the Queensland Timber Board. We also have access and connections to other international associations like the Wood Preservative Science Council (USA), Wood Preservation Canada, Creosote Council (USA), Western Wood Preservers Institute (USA), New Zealand Timber Preservation Council, Treated Wood Council (USA) and the Timber Research and Development Association (UK)
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The International Research Group on Wood Protection
The Timber Preservers Association of Australia
The Western European Institute for Wood Preservation
Western Wood Preservers Institute (USA)
American Wood Protection Association
Wood Protection Association (UK)
Wood Preservative Science Council (USA)
New Zealand Timber Preservation Council
Wood Preservation Canada
Treated Wood Council (USA)
Creosote Council (USA)
Timber Research and Development Association – TRADA
EXPAND AREA OF INFLUENCE
When required, SAWPA expands its area of influence into other Southern African countries for the benefit of our members, from the point of view of standards, exports and purchases of raw material.
FACILITATOR TO THE INDUSTRY
SAWPA has evolved as the facilitator to the industry. We have become the link between our members and the regulating authorities. We disseminate information, communicate with members, identify and try to overcome problems for the industry - generally do whatever it takes to make things as easy as possible for the common good of all our members. This is a role which members require us to continue. An example of one of the projects we have completed was motivated in order to reduce the impact of wood treatment on the environment.
The South African Wood Preservation Association (SAWPA) developed practical guidelines for safer practices in industrial wood preservation. The aim of the guide is to help reduce the exposure of workers to dangerous chemicals and to reduce or prevent the release of pollutants to the environment.
Wood preservation, or as it is also known the preservative treatment of timber, in South Africa is controlled under specific SANS specifications. This control is laid down by legislation which states that if timber is treated, it is to be properly treated in terms of the applicable SANS and NRCS compulsory specification. This control is laid down by legislation which states that if timber is treated, it is to be properly treated in terms of an SABS specification.
There are specifications in place for the actual treatment process, the treatment chemicals and the finished product. Specifications are arrived at after consensus between the SABS and the timber preservation industry. This Association has become the spokes medium for the industry and as a result has become the facilitator of the timber preservation industry.
Constitution of the South African Wood Preservers Association
ACCESS TO INFORMATION
The South African Wood Preservers Association (SAWPA) Promotion of Access to Information manual is prepared in accordance with Section 51 of the Promotion of Access to Information Act No. 2 of 2000.
The South African Wood Preservers Association (SAWPA) is a non-profit Association formed by the wood preserving industry, primarily to promote timber treatment and the sale of treated timber products.
View the SAWPA PAIA document here.