02.06.2017 13:19

Natureplus becomes an environmental organization

Category: Von und über natureplus

At the General Assembly in May, natureplus changed its constitution fundamentally, in order position the activity of the association in the environmental and consumer protection.

Break during the meeting in Hotel Albrechtshof, Berlin.

Outgoing Chairman of the Board Uwe Welteke-Fabricious put it in a nutshell: “From today on, natureplus is no longer just a label supplier but a European environmental and consumer organization in the construction sector. This is the key milestone of a long development and the logical consequence of the spin-off from business certification into the NATUREPLUS INSTITUTE SCE. " At the Annual General Meeting of natureplus e.V. on 8th May in Berlin, what had already been decided upon the Extraordinary General Meeting in Munich in January was retraced under statutory law: the economic activities of the association - especially in the assessment and certification of construction products and the awarding of the natureplus label - are handed over to the European cooperative NATUREPLUS INSTITUTE SCE, in which natureplus e.V. has a small share. In return, the association concentrates on non-profit activities in consumer information, environmental protection as well as scientific research on sustainability in construction.

Division of labor between the association and the cooperation

The future division of labor (the NATUREPLUS INSTITUTE SCE is still not registered and cannot yet start its activities) looks therefore as follows: the association has still the task to set the standard criteria for sustainable construction products based on scientific research, and to steer by this the content orientation of the label. Further tasks consist in the information of the public, the continuing education of target-groups in the building sector as well as the further international dissemination of the association. On the other hand, the cooperative has the task of carrying out the entire certification process from the contracting up to the award of the label. The institute markets the label itself, thus assuming above all the customer acquisition and the participation in trade fairs and exhibitions, and manages also the maintain and further development of the natureplus database. In return, the NATUREPLUS INSTITUTE SCE manages the royalties of the association, which in so doing administrates its assets (the trademark rights on the venatureplus label).

New area: private people can now also actively participate

In the course of the numerous amendments, which were always adopted unanimously and generally aimed at the separation of the certification business and the formulation of the new tasks of the association, some organizational restructuring was made. The following is the most important: from now on, interested private individuals can actively participate in the association as well as making use of its services. A new area was set up in the parity-filled board of directors and in the voting power divided by areas, so that natureplus e.V. now comprises eight equal sections of various interest groups (producers, traders, construction industry, consultancy organizations, environmental associations, trade unions, science and private people). As natureplus' managing director Thomas Schmitz emphasized, the association will in the future be more active than before: "There are great growth potentials still unused." Moreover, the financial office now seeks recognition as a non-profit association, which also brings tax advantages in addition to a better reputation. 

International expansion

The Management Board sees another important task in the establishment of substructures of the association in the various countries in which natureplus is active. As a result, natureplus' message could be better adapted to national circumstances and spread more easily. However, in the various European countries, the prerequisites are still very different, and in most of them it is not yet possible to form such state associations. First of all, the membership recruitment must significantly broaden the base. Hence the rejection of the Board of Management’s proposal, to introduce a rule by now on how these associations should be represented in the future Board of Directors. This can wait until the General Assembly in 2018. Until then, the current Executive Board has been elected and remains in office. However, a change takes place at the head of the association: Uwe Welteke-Fabricius will leave the board for professional reasons after a transitional period. Rolf Buschmann, who’s been unanimously elected by the assembly, will move up as representative of the German environmental organization BUND (Friends of the Earth). The board will decide, before the summer break, who will hold the chair of the board in the future.


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