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Latest timber industry news, updated on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

Timber Release Plan – VicForests’ open house in Gippsland

VicForests is inviting the community to learn more about proposed changes to the Timber Release Plan (TRP) 2019 at an Open House in Traralgon on 11 December 2019. Regular revision of the TRP is an important part of VicForests’ routine planning for timber harvesting in Victoria’s east.
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Federal Labor at odds with Victorian Labor on forestry

Federal Shadow Minister for Agriculture and Resources Joel Fitzgibbon has strongly backed Victoria’s native forest industries as sustainable, this is at odds with Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews who plans to shut it down. Source: Timberbiz Speaking at the Australian Forest Products A
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What can an Upper House inquiry do for native forestry?

At the protest rally held in Melbourne on Tuesday 26 November outside Parliament House, the leader of the Victorian opposition, Michael O’Brien, stated that he would instigate an inquiry into the closing down of the native forestry industry in Victoria. The proposed Legislative Counci
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Legislative Council inquiry on native forestry shutdown

  Victoria’s opposition leader, Michael O’Brien speaking at the first of what may be many such protests, stated that he would put the facts on the table about native forestry in Victoria and his party would push for an upper house inquiry in 2020. The proposed Legislative Council
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Gippsland fights for its future

Representatives from Gippsland’s native timber industry have agreed to fight for the future of the industry and are calling for an urgent meeting with the State Premier following a meeting in Bairnsdale this week with local, state and federal government representatives. Source: Timber
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Labor missing in action at VAFI dinner

Not surprisingly no Victorian Labor politician showed his face at the Victorian Association of Forestry Industries (VAFI) awards dinner held on Friday 15 November in Melbourne. However, the number of opposition politicians was impressive including long time timber industry supporter M
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Labor votes to uphold Dan’s timber ban

The Andrews Government in Victoria on Wednesday voted down a motion in State Parliament seeking support for the native timber industry. The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region Melina Bath who raised the motion said the Andrews Government would go down as the most anti-regiona
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Victorian Labor – one hand gives, while the other takes away

Corryong sawmill operator and pallet manufacturer Graham Walker received a letter in October from Victoria’s Minister for Regional Development, Agriculture and Resources Jaclyn Symes good enough to take to the bank. In fact, he did. The letter recommended he continue to work with VicF
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Fury grows over native logging ban

Yesterday’s announcement that native timber logging in Victoria will be phased out by 2030 has left the industry in shock and people in regional areas such as Gippsland reeling.The State Government in Victoria revealed its plans yesterday for the current level of native timber availab
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Native timber logging ban in Victoria by 2030

Logging of native trees will be phased out in Victoria by 2030. Source: Timberbiz The State Government in Victoria revealed its plans today for the current level of native timber available for logging to be reduced from 2024-25. It has been reported a financial assistance package for
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Jubliee at the Green Triangle Timber industry Awards

OneFortyOne’s Jubilee Sawmill has been recognised for its commitment to the timber industry with the Supreme Timber Industry Award at the Green Triangle Timber Industry Awards (GTTIA). Source: Timberbiz In front of a sell-out 500-plus audience on Friday night Jubilee Sawmill – OneFort
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Environment minister urged to study data from Gippsland Youth on forestry

Victoria’s Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio has been urged to read and use data from a Gippsland Youth Symposium’s Future of our Forests report. But State MLC Melina Bath, who represents Victoria’s eastern region, said she did not expect the Minister to read the document. So
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Senator Duniam’s forestry delegation to Japan

An Australian forest industries delegation to Japan accompanying the Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries Senator Jonathan Duniam will build a stronger relationship and help expand the market for high-quality Australian forest products, Chief Executive Officer of the Australi
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OFO submission to SA Legislative Council timber committee

OneFortyOne (OFO) has made its submission to the SA Legislative Council Select Committee on Matters Relating to the Timber Industry in the Limestone Coast. Chief executive officer, Linda Sewell, stated that the company had responded to the question of whether the export of wood fibre
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Winners announced for Australian Timber Design 2019

The Annual Australian Timber Design Award winners for 2019 were announced recently in Melbourne and fitzpatrick + partners claimed first prize for their stunning Castlecrag home aptly named The Seed House. Source: Timberbiz The Seed House blends in seamlessly with the surrounding bush
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Responsible Wood AGM and the Richard Stanton award

Responsible Wood, Australia’s largest forest certification scheme, has announced that the University of South Australia’s Mount Gambier Campus will be hosting its Annual General Meeting next Tuesday, 22 October 2019. Source:  Timberbiz Responsible Wood will be awarding the coveted Ric
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Nippon Paper to acquire Orora fibre packaging division

Nippon Paper Industries (Nippon Paper) has announced an agreement with Orora Limited to acquire its Australia and New Zealand fibre packaging division. The contract was signed following the Nippon Paper board of directors meeting held in Tokyo, Japan. The purchase will be subject to f
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ACCC has concerns over New Forests Tasmanian purchase

Concerns have been raised by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) over a proposed sale of Tasmanian hardwood plantations owned by Resource Management Service to New Forests and Global Forest Partners. Source: Timberbiz Resource Management Service has made its plan
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Victorian opposition opens community consultation in Gippsland

Young people in Gippsland came together last week for a regional symposium on the future of our forests. Organised by Shadow Assistant Minister for Public Land and The Nationals Member for Eastern Victoria Region, Melina Bath, the day was an opportunity for young Gippslanders to have
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Vic Government cancels community consultation on code for timber

The Victorian State Government has cancelled its community consultation process into reforms to the code of practice for timber production. State Environment Minister Lily D’Ambosio took the odd step of announcing the community engagement on the code through a release on Twitter. Sour
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FIAT – there was no request to log native Tas forests

The Forest Industries Association of Tasmania (FIAT) has made no request for access to log native Tasmanian forests despite reports of a potential short-fall in supply. FIAT acting chief executive Terry Edwards said all the industry has requested was an assessment of 357,000ha of fore
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World Green Building report highlights potential of Australian timber

A new report by the World Green Building Council (WGBC) has highlighted the huge potential of timber product building solutions to reduce emissions in Australia’s built environment. Source: Timberbiz The report, Bringing Embodied Carbon Upfront, says renewable timber products will pla
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VicForests’ radical policy to achieve FSC certification

VicForests has launched a radical policy on native forest operations that involves revised harvesting and regeneration techniques as part of its campaign to achieve FSC certification. The policy centres on preserving “high conservation value” (HCV) native forest and removing perceived
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Uncovering new opportunities to use wood in housing

Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) is working to uncover new opportunities in the detached housing market, with the development of a technical extension program that will encourage the use of wood products in residential Class 1 properties.  Source: Timberbiz The recently launc
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Tech transfer for the softwood sector to improve processing

A new approach to tech transfer and skills development was delivered through a workshop to help the softwood sector improve its understanding of how to better use the massive quantities of data collected during mill operations, with a view to improving processing activities. Source: T
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Plantation insurance – the pressure is on

Record temperatures globally over the past few years have generated unprecedented high Forest Fire Danger Index conditions. These conditions have extended the duration of the traditional fire season in many regions and, of more concern, have been the catalyst for losses in regions not
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NSW government may lease commercial softwood plantations

The NSW Government is looking at the “viability” of a long-term lease of the State’s commercial softwood plantation business, consistent with its asset recycling strategy. Forestry Corporation’s profitable softwood division consists of around 230,000 hectares of radiata pine forests p
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Rob de Fegely awarded NW Jolly Medal

Margules Groome Consulting’s Rob de Fegely has been awarded the NW Jolly Medal for his services to the Australian forest industry at an Australian and New Zealand Institute of Forestry conference in Christchurch. Source: Timberbiz Mr de Fegely is also chairman of Sustainable Timber Ta
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VAFI calls for action now on protesters in Kinglake

The Victorian Association of Forest Industries Inc. (VAFI) has called for immediate action from the State Government after a protest in a timber harvesting coupe in Kinglake has again stopped forest contractors from making a living. Source: Timberbiz VAFI CEO, Tim Johnston, said the G
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Australia must have safe compliant buildings

The Australian public must be protected through safe, compliant buildings and that will only be achieved through buy-in by everyone involved in the building and construction industry and with everyone being accountable for their own work, a NSW upper house inquiry has been told. Sourc
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Koondrook-Perricoota State forests replenishment

Up to 4500 hectares of red gum forest, fringing creeks, wetland and habitat will be replenished over the next 60 days thanks to a planned watering event in the Koondrook and Perricoota State Forests. Source: Timberbiz Forestry Corporation of NSW’s The Living Murray Program Manager for
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Queensland urged to reject proposal to close pine plantations

The Queensland State Government has been urged to reject an “absurd, outrageous and highly destructive proposal to close our pine plantations”. Gympie MP and opposition spokesman for agricultural industry development and fisheries and forestry Tony Perrett was responding to a proposal
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Forestry is not a threat to koalas

Sustainable timber harvesting is not a significant threat to koalas in New South Wales, a State Government inquiry has been told. The Forestry Corporation of NSW told the Inquiry into koala populations and habitat in New South Wales last week that known threats to koala populations ar
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WA joins Tasmania and adopts Wood Encouragement Policy

Western Australia has joined Tasmania to become the second state government to adopt a state-wide Wood Encouragement Policy (WEP). A WEP requires responsibly sourced wood be considered, where feasible, as the primary construction material in all new-build and refurbishment projects. S
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IPCC report relies on forestry for change

An intergovernmental report on climate change released late last week highlights the need for a whole-of-landscape approach to tackling climate change, and the vital role the agriculture and forestry sector can play in reducing emissions and storing carbon, according to Climate Proofi
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Australian Paper on track with $200m spend

Australian Paper is moving ahead with its five-year, $200 million capital investment program at its Maryvale paper mill in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley. The company committed $51 million in the second year of the program to upgrade key strategic infrastructure, according to AP’s 2018 Sus
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Hardwood chips demand strengthens daily – can we supply

A big deficit in the supply of hardwood woodchips is expected in the Asia-Pacific in the next three-to-five years, with demand in China, already the world’s biggest importer, expected to continue growing, according to Australian forestry giant Midway Group. Source: Philip Hopkins for
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Regional Victorians focus on forestry’s economic opportunities

People in Victoria’s regions are far more interested maintaining jobs and economic opportunities from the state’s forests than people in the city, according to early feedback from the Future of Our Forests program. The RFA modernisation process is an integral part of the program. Sour
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Russia could swamp Australasian markets with high grade timber

Russia is emerging as a major timber exporter that could potentially swamp markets in Australia and New Zealand, a forestry conference has been told. Dennis Nielson, director of NZ-based consultancy DANA, said Russia as a country was overwhelming in its scale, with a forestry industry
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Hancock’s headwinds for Australasia’s timberland strategy

The Australian forestry market remains attractive to international investors despite a few headwinds, according to Hancock’s Australasian chief, Bill McCallum, who also signalled that an integrated timberland/farmland investment strategy expanded the opportunities for investors. Sourc
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Senator Duniam declares support for forestry at DANA conference

Careful planning is aiming to ensure the mistakes of the past in establishing plantations and farm forestry are not repeated, the new federal Minister for Forests, Jonathon Duniam, said yesterday. Senator Duniam, speaking to a DANA conference in Brisbane, reiterated the Government’s s
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Big River Group picks up Plytech and Decortech in Auckland

Big River has started on its global expansion strategy to better serve its customers across the Tasman and grow its business in the plywood and specialty segments in New Zealand with the acquisition of Plytech, Auckland and Decortech in Penrose, Auckland. Source: Timberbiz “Plytech an
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Industry groups call for urgent Australia-wide action on building regulation

Building industry groups have signed a joint call for urgent Australia-wide action on building regulations. The letter, signed by the Property Council of Australia, the Insurance Council of Australia, Ai Group and the Australian Construction Industry Forum, says Australia’s fragmented
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Testing the water to shut town native timber in Victoria

A market research company is visiting country towns in Victoria to test the water on the public’s reaction to shutting down the native timber industry. The most recent of several events was in Maryborough on Wednesday night. Others are understood to have taken place in Shepparton and
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RFA paper misrepresents native forestry says IFA

The RFA modernisation paper understates the existing levels of protection for biodiversity in Victoria and misrepresents the role of the state’s native forest timber industry, according to the Institute of Foresters of Australia (IFA). Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The paper bo
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Djarlma Plan part of new strategic direction for WA forestry

Western Australia has launched a plan that sets a new strategic direction for the state’s forestry industry based on local Aborigines’ spiritual outlook. The state’s Wood Encouragement Policy is a key part of what is called the Djarlma Plan, which was inspired by Djarlma – the N
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VEAC’s calculations don’t add up says SETA

VEAC’s estimate of $270 million in economic value driven by forest protection in Victoria’s Central West is a mathematical fantasy that ignores real money from a functioning timber industry, according to a regional-based forestry group. The South East Timber Association (SETA) said in
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VEAC ignores its legal obligations

The Victorian Environment Assessment Council (VEAC) has been accused of ignoring its legal obligations with its final report into Victoria’s Central West, while the forestry industry has condemned its recommendations. The VEAC report, released last week, dramatically cut the timber in
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ABARES stats show a generally favourable outlook

Australia’s forestry industry continues to show signs of growth according to a new report released by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARES). Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries, Senator Jonathon Duniam, said the report’s findings were great ne
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Timber construction to upskill workers

The Australian construction industry needs to focus more on industry skilling and the enabling of modern construction enterprise capability, a leading construction industry expert has warned. Source: Timberbiz Adjunct Professor at the Centre for Smart Modern Construction at Western Sy
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Australia doing poorly in offsite construction

Offsite construction in Australia, despite the hype, is wallowing in disillusionment, with some prominent failures undermining confidence in the sector, according to one of Australia’s leading construction experts. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz “Despite all the hype, 20 years i
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Order of Australia for Paul Madden of Arbuthnot Sawmills

Timber industry stalwart Paul Madden from Barham on the Murray River has been awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia in the Queen’s Birthday 2019 Honours List for his service to primary industry and to the community of the Riverina. Source:  Timberbiz Mr Madden is general m
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Forestry’s Ronald Adams awarded Order of Australia

The inaugural chairman of Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA), Ronald Adams, has been recognised with an Order of Australia on the Queen’s Birthday 2019 Honours List for his career-long contributions to benefiting Australia’s forestry and wood sector as well as the communi
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Wood: The Ultimate Renewable campaign launch

A new forestry advertising campaign with the logo, ‘Wood: The Ultimate Renewable’, is set to hit the screens, not just as a re-invigorated branding, but as a strategic reframing and an organising idea for the whole forestry sector. The campaign, launched in Melbourne on Tuesday night,
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Forestry analyst values forests at $18b

Forestry deals in Australia and New Zealand over the past 20 years have totalled up to $18 billion, according to a leading forestry analyst. Managing director Indufor Asia-Pacific (Australia), Andrew Morton, said the value of 93 transactions in Australasia over the 20-year period was
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Meet Australia’s new minister for forestry

Senator Jonathan Duniam, the new assistant federal minister in charge of forestry, was a senior member of Tasmanian Premier Will Hodgman’s staff during the development of the new Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement. Senator Duniam grew up in the north-west of Tasmania and went to univ
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New ministers for forestry announced

Australia’s forest industries congratulate the new Minister for Agriculture, Victorian Senator Bridget McKenzie and Assistant Minister with responsibility for Forestry and Fisheries, Tasmanian Senator Jonathon Duniam. Source: Timberbiz “Prime Minister Morrison’s new Cabinet demonstrat
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NZ’s Wellbeing Budget has focus on forestry

New Zealand’s Wellbeing Budget will enable further transformation of the country’s forestry sector after the successful rollout of the Government’s One Billion Trees program, according to Forestry Minister Shane Jones. The NZ government has called it the Wellbeing Budget as it says it
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LiDAR data to be available across Victorian forests

Advanced technology to map Victoria’s forests is being used as part of the State Government’s plans to modernise forest management, particularly for the Regional Forest Agreements. The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DEWLP) has acquired Victoria’s largest ever acq
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SA inquiry to focus on forestry present and future

South Australia’s Liberal Government says that it successfully delivered a positive forestry inquiry despite a negative, divisive approach by the Labor Opposition according to Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone. Source: Timberbiz “The Shadow Ministe
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BDO to audit OneFortyOne

The State Government of South Australia has appointed BDO Advisory (SA) Pty Ltd to undertake an independent audit on the Plantation Lease Agreement with OneFortyOne Plantations Pty Ltd. Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone said BDO has partnered with
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More R&D needed in Australian forestry

Both major political parties have committed to spend more on forestry research and development to reverse the plunge in both industry R&D spending and the number of research scientists over the past decade. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz R&D was a key theme of last week’
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Concessional loans to plantation owners for a Liberal vote

The Federal Government will provide $500 million in low interest loans to plantation growers if it is re-elected as part of its plan to dramatically expand plantations in Australia. However, the Government’s backtracking on allowing farm forestry and plantations full access to the Emi
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AFPA supports key Labor forestry initiatives

The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has welcomed Federal Labor’s policy package, which agrees to several AFPA policy priorities to grow Australia’s renewable forest industries. Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) CEO Ross Hampton said there were three key commi
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Forestry election debate in Launceston tomorrow with ministers

The Forest Industries Election Debate run by AFPA will be an important policy debate ahead of the Federal Election, focusing entirely on policy that directly affects Australia’s full value chain of forest industries. Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Richard Colbe
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Fuel reduction burning a must for Australian forests

Veteran firefighter Ewan Waller has called for fuel reduction burning to be an integral part of a visionary, long-term policy for managing fire in the forest. His thoughts were prompted by the recent fires in Gippsland and his memories of the Black Saturday inferno when he experienced
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Australia no longer a dumping ground for copy paper

In a boost to Australian paper manufacturing, the Federal Government has imposed duties on copy paper imports from four countries after finding the countries have been dumping A4 copy paper onto the Australian market. The Minister for Industry, Science and Technology, Kevin Andrews, a
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Minister D’Ambrosio’s radical approach to forestry carbon credits

Victoria’s native forest industry would be closed to generate carbon credits under the Victorian Regional Forest Agreements in a proposal pushed by the state’s Minister for Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio. The potential move has been strongly criticised as misunderstan
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The buzz is that RFAs are good for bees

“Despite reports in ‘The Guardian’, the beekeeping industry wishes to work collaboratively with the forestry industry and state governments to ensure access to resources in state forests,” he said in a statement. “ALL values and uses of the forests need to be recognised throughout Aus
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WA RFA extended for 20 years

The Western Australian Regional Forest Agreement (RFA) has been extended for another 20 years with an annual sustainable yield of at least 191,000 cubic metres of high-quality jarrah and karri saw logs. The landmark RFA agreement for WA’s $1.4 billion was signed on Friday by the Prime
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Sustainable Timber Tas to gain certification from FSC

Sustainable Timber Tasmania (STT) has launched a process to gain certification for its forestry activities from the Forest Stewardship Council. SCS Global Services will conduct an audit of STT’s forestry practices, starting on 20 May, against the new FSC Australian Forest Stewardship
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Deputy PM calls for forestry hub in Southern NSW

Deputy Prime Minister and Leader of the Nationals, Michael McCormack, has backed a Regional Forestry Hub in the South West Slopes (Tumut-Tumbarumba region) of southern NSW. In a letter released by the South West Slopes’ Softwoods Working Group (SWG), the Deputy Prime Minister expresse
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$30m for Australian farmers with carbon benefits from trees

A $30 million federal government farm biodiversity program that includes potential carbon benefits for tree planting has been backed by the forest industry and Labor Party. Under the $30 million pilot Agriculture Biodiversity Stewardship Program, farmers could receive incentives for p
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NSW election result removes threat from koala national park

The peak forestry body in New South Wales says the election of the Coalition Government has removed the threat from the proposed new koala national park but much work remains to be done. Timber NSW General Manager Maree McCaskill said the proposed Great Koala National Park in northern
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Education initiatives on International Day of Forests

The Australian Liberal National Government is delivering $200,000 for two new education initiatives in partnership with Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) to educate the next generation to help the industry thrive into the future. Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Re
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Too many possums & walkers for Victorian logging to continue

Uncertainty over the future of Victoria’s native forest industry has deepened as more sites of the official “critically endangered” Leadbeater’s Possum have been found, and negotiations continue over the East Gippsland forest set aside for industry where the Andrews Government designa
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Code of practice too complex says Timber NSW

The New South Wales Codes of Practice and controls governing private native forest ignore long-term ecological sustainability, and are too complex and should be simplified, with the over-regulation sending a message of lack of trust, according to the state’s peak forestry body. The ch
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Forestry experts condemn ‘weak rant’ against industry

Forestry experts have described as “a weak rant” and “gross misrepresentation” arguments by Fairfax economics editor Ross Gittins that the native forest industry in Central Gippsland is uneconomic and deprives Melbourne of huge amounts of water through logging of water catchments. Mr
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Colbeck reassures forestry at ABARES conference

According to Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Richard Colbeck the outlook for the forest, seafood and horticulture sectors is bright despite clear risks, with continued growth in Australia and overseas providing new markets and opportunities. That was th
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Victorian bushfire update and Tasmanian stats on fire affected forests

Bushfires now in Victoria and previously in Tasmania have had a devastating affect not only on forestry but also and more importantly livelihoods, livestock and lives with firefighters in Victoria currently building containment lines around fires burning east of Melbourne before “gust
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NSW invests almost $40m in forestry with AFCA to benefit

New South Wales Government Minister for Forestry Paul Toole announced that the Government is investing almost $40 million to support innovation and training for NSW’s forestry industry and has allocated $4.6 million to support the development of a training and certification scheme for
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ANU promotes a flawed science on environmental issues

Two forestry scientists have harshly criticised “false science” and its links to environmental activism as completely distorting the truth about the native forestry industry and the endangered status of the Leadbeater’s Possum. Forestry consultant and author Mark Poynter and Mike Ryan
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What is the State of the Forests Australia?

About 150 million tonnes of carbon are stored in Australian wood products, clear felling only makes up 9% of native forest harvesting, and forest activities pose relatively little danger to threatened species. Those are some of the conclusions of Australia’s State of the Forests 2018
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Colbeck heads meeting on issues faced by forestry

Forestry ministers from the Commonwealth, the states and territories met in Melbourne on 15 February 2019 at the Forestry Ministers Meeting to discuss ways to continue to support Australia’s forestry industries. There was one similar meeting in June last year and three in 2017.
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International accolades for International House

International House in Sydney, the first commercial office building in Australia made from timber, has won a major award at the World Architecture Festival in Amsterdam. The seven-floor structure, which is also the world’s tallest commercial building made from engineered wood, was awa
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Huon Valley fires update – extent of damage still to be assessed

The Ta Ann Mill at Southwood and its surrounding plantations were a high priority for firefighters following widespread fire in the Huon Valley last week. There was some superficial damage to buildings as an ember attack in the wake of the fire front damaged a skylight and entered the
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Tasmanian bushfires – an immense impact on forestry

The bushfires in Tasmania are having a big impact on the state’s private forestry industry, with tens of thousands of hectares burnt. Private Forests Tasmania (PFT) said that as of February 5, a total of 35,325 hectares of the private forest estate had been burnt in the fires. Source:
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Help for business impacted by Tasmanian bushfires

Business Tasmania is a Tasmanian Government service which provides the business community with a range of support and assistance. In times of extreme weather events or other emergencies, Business Tasmania can help impacted businesses access necessary information and services. Source:
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Private Native Forestry – An Open letter to Queensland Government

The Queensland Hardwood Timber Industry is coming under increasing pressure from many directions. Demand for timber products is increasing at a rapid rate and Queensland has the potential to become a significant supplier and processor of world-class, sustainable and durable wood. Sour
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IFA and AFG merger to create a body with more punch

The Institute of Foresters of Australia has voted overwhelmingly to merge with Australian Forest Growers, creating a body with potentially more punch in the forest industry. More than 90% of IFA voters supported the merger, at an extraordinary general meeting last week. The AFG had al
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Hyne GLT used for diagrid for Queensland turtles

Kirk Architects and Hyne Timber have been chosen to build a new centre known as a ‘diagrid’ for turtles in Queensland using Spotted Gum. The Mon Repos structure itself is known as a ‘diagrid’ which presents an innovative resistance against cyclonic conditions. It is believed to be the
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National Farmers’ drive to encourage tree planting

The National Farmers Federation has a forestry expert running the government and industry drive to encourage farmers to plant more trees to alleviate Australia’s plantation shortage. Warwick Ragg, the NFF’s general manager of natural resource management, was the chief executive of Aus
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A breakdown of the NSW RFAs

The New South Wales forestry industry will have access to about 340,000 cubic metres of quality saw logs annually from native forests over the next five years under the recommitted 20-year regional forest agreements. More than 1 million cubic metres of non-high quality logs will also
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Operational changes at ForestWorks

Tim Woods has taken on the role of acting general manager of ForestWorks following the resignation of general manager Diana Lloyd after more than two years in the role. Mr Woods is a well known and respected industry figure and a regular contributor to Timberbiz. Source: Timberbiz 
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NZ incentives for tree planting include climate change vision

New Zealand has deepened the environmental role of forestry as part of its $NZ480 million, 10-year plan to plant one billion new trees by 2028. The Minister for Forests, Shane Jones, said NZ had now included permanent forests as part of changes to its Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) sh
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Indepth on VicForests report

VicForests made a net profit of $1.2 million on sales of about $101 million in 2017-18 despite big cutbacks in the state’s timber resource, according to the annual report of the government’s commercial forestry operator. The state-owned company, despite a small drop in the value of sa
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VEAC’s draft proposals ignore real issues in Central West

Victorian Environment Assessment Council (VEAC) draft forestry proposals for Central West Victoria slug the region’s timber industry, while ignoring its economic importance and its role in fighting fires and maintaining biodiversity, according to the state’s peak forestry body. The dr
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New Geelong timber manufacturing factory “industry game-changer”

Quintessential Equity has hailed the opening of a new Cross Laminated Timber (CLT) processing and offsite manufacturing factory at Avalon Airport’s new industrial precinct, as a major win for both the City of Geelong and the building industry’s march toward more sustainable methods of
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Merger between IFA and AFG one step closer

Exciting times are ahead for the Institute of Foresters of Australia (IFA) and Australian Forest Growers (AFG) as they facilitate Extraordinary General Meetings for their members to vote on the proposed merger of IFA and AFG, a proposal endorsed by both boards of the two not-for-profi
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Norske Skog to invest $7m in NZ

The Norske Skog group has decided to invest about AUD$7 million to upgrade the Nature’s Flame wood pellets facility in New Zealand to more than double its annual production capacity to 85,000 tonnes. The increased production capacity will be commissioned in the fourth quarter of 2019.
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Pulp and paper leads the way in sustainability and innovation

Australia’s renewable pulp and paper industries are leading the way in global sustainability and innovation, according to the 2018 National Pulp and Paper Sustainability Report. “The report confirms Australia’s renewable pulp and paper industries are setting the agenda with ambitious
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Australian Paper gets enviro tick for waste disposal energy

Australian Paper’s $600 million energy from waste proposal at its Latrobe Valley plant has been given an ‘environmental tick’ from EPA Victoria. The EPA has issued a Works Approval, which means the project meets the EPA’s stringent emissions standards. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timbe
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Durable Eucalyptus Grower’s Forum Australia & NZ launched

Eucalyptus species are grown throughout the world for their hardwood qualities and rapid growth. As a plantation species, their most common use is for pulp production and in many developing countries for utility poles and fuel wood. In Australia, there are approximately 900,000 hectar
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Forestry chief dumped from new Victorian Cabinet

Former Victorian forestry chief, Philip Dalidakis, has been dumped from the new Victorian Labor Cabinet because half the ministers will be women. Mr Dalidakis, a former chief executive of the Victorian Forest Industries Association and a strong forestry supporter, was omitted from the
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Labor rejects ABC’s allegations on improper harvesting

The Andrews Government – senior ministers and relevant departments – has strongly rejected allegations made on the ABC that VicForests has illegally harvested native forest timber on a massive scale. ABC’s 7:30 Report, three days before Saturday’s state election, accused VicForests of
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CFMEU at loggerheads with FSC on new standards

Just recently FSC Australia was making the news with what it called its ‘groundbreaking’ Australian version of the world’s strongest forestry standard. In FSC’s media release it pointed to a certification standard “jointly agreed by industry, environment and community interests”. Whil
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Pellets are a growth opportunity for Australia

Wood pellets, which can play a big role in cutting carbon dioxide when used in pulverised coal power stations, are a growing export opportunity for Australia, according to Australia’s peak wood researcher. Wood pellet exports are increasing and their future looks bright, says Forest &
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400 tonnes of timber for auction in WA

About 400 tonnes of logs and a selection of sawn timber are up for auction on Saturday 24 November in Western Australia. The auction, for timber from the South West and Goldfields regions, will take place at the WA Forest Products Commission Harvey Mill. It will kick off at 10am. The
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FSC forest certification standard made for Australia

The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) has developed a new forest certification standard specifically for Australia to support the sustainable management of forests across the country. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz FSC Australia’s National Forest Stewardship Standard joins the ex
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Australian Paper feasibility study for $600m waste plant

Australian Paper is forging ahead with its $7.5 million feasibility study into building a $600 million energy from waste plant at the Maryvale paper mill in Victoria’s Latrobe Valley, according to the company’s 2017-18 Sustainability Report. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The pr
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Review of Sustainable Timber Tasmania annual report

Revenue from the sale of Tasmanian forest products from public land rose by more than 19% last year to $144.86 million, according to Sustainable Timber Tasmania’s annual report. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz A $26.6 million increase in the value of the managed forest, plus othe
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VAFI Industry Review 2018

Victoria’s plantation estate needs to be increased by about 20% to 500,000 hectares over the next decade, according to one of Victoria’s peak industry bodies. Source: Philip Hopkins for  Timberbiz Victoria now has about 421,700 hectares of hardwood and softwood plantations, the Victor
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Victorian forestry industry awards for excellence

A young female forester, Emma Gall from HVP Plantations, was one of four winners at this year’s Victorian forestry industry awards, which covered individual excellence, sustainability and contributions to the economy and community. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The awards were
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KIPT appoints new director

The Board of Kangaroo Island Plantation Timbers (KIPT) has planned a transition to a governance and management structure better suited to an operating timber export business. Source: Timberbiz As the development phase of the company’s growth approaches its conclusion and the productio
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Andrews Government voices pre-election support for timber and forestry

A leading Andrews Government minister, Philip Dalidakis, vowed to the Victorian forestry industry on Friday night that he would boycott Bunnings and Officeworks if they refused to sell Victorian forestry products. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz “As far as I am aware, I’m the onl
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Government to get tough with Australian Forestry Standards

The Federal Government has foreshadowed a tough approach towards retailers who refuse to sell goods certified under the internationally recognised Australian Forestry Standard (AFS). Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The Assistant Minister for Agriculture, Senator Richard Colbeck,
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Government’s one billion trees plan inadequately supported

The Federal Government’s $20 million forestry plan to plant one billion trees is a big policy step, but is inadequate as it amounts to only two cents per tree. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz That was a key point made by the chairman of the Australian Forest Products Association,
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Home building beats expectations

According to HIA economist Diwa Hopkins Australia’s home building industry beat expectations in commencing construction of 228,480 homes in the 2017/18 financial year. Source: Timberbiz This represents a 3.3% increase on home starts in the previous financial year.  The ABS today relea
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VicForests Roadmap for FSC Controlled Wood

VicForests released the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) audit report (May 2018) and reaffirmed its commitment to pursuing certification of FSC Controlled Wood standard. In conjunction with the results, VicForests released its FSC 2020: VicForests Controlled Wood Roadmap outlining the
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Funding opens up the future of forestry in NSW

The NSW Government has opened round 1 of applications under the Forest Industries Innovation Fund loan scheme – a $34 million fund to assist industry in adopting new technology and innovative practices. Source: Timberbiz The scheme aims to attract projects that will better address the
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Fire season nears in Australia – we should take heed

Aborigines’ fire management skills should be integrated into Victoria’s fire-fighting planning to complement fuel reduction burning, according to the state’s forestry experts. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz “The traditional owners of the land have unique skills and expertise in
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NSW to fund forestry projects to open up markets

The NSW Government will fund new innovative forestry projects aimed at improving profitability, opening up new local and international markets, and preparing for future opportunities. Source: Timberbiz Minister for Lands and Forestry Paul Toole said applications would soon open for th
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National forestry plan examined

A total of 30 key plantation regions will be created under the Federal Government’s national forestry plan, with farmers playing a big role in planting trees. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The $20 million, four-year plan aims to plant an additional 400,000 hectares of forests –
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AFPA annual report released

The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) has released its annual report for the 2017/2018 year and in it  Chief Executive Officer Ross Hampton said the association has had a strong year, growing in membership, capacity, capability and influence. Source: Timberbiz He said that
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The robots are coming!

Robots are likely to have a bigger role in timber processing as they take over work that is dirty, dangerous or difficult. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz That was a key message of Troy Krogh, regional director of Scott Automation & Robotics, to the WoodTech conference in Melbourn
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A billion trees for Australia in new Liberal plan

Australia’s renewable timber and wood-fibre industry will be better prepared for future challenges and opportunities with the support of the Australian Government’s National Forest Industries Plan – Growing a better Australia. Source: Timberbiz Minister for Agriculture and Water Resou
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OneFortyOne’s two significant initiatives

The new owner of Nelson Forests OneFortyOne (OFO) has marked the settlement of its purchase with the announcement of two significant new initiatives – the establishment of a substantial fund for sedimentation research and a school leaver program that will provide trade apprenticeships
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SA state budget delivers for forestry

The Australian Forest Products Association SA Branch (AFPA SA) has welcomed the forest industries measures announced in the South Australian State Budget. Source: Timberbiz “It’s great to see that the SA Government has heeded the advice of AFPA SA provided during the state election ca
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Timberlink $100m investment in regional manufacturing Jobs

Timberlink has approved a $100 million upgrade program to its Australian sawmills. This generational investment will see the total processing capacity of the Australasian sawmilling company increase by more than 15%. Source: Timberbiz The investment will secure more than 1350 direct a
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Colbeck’s welcome comeback to forestry may be cut short

After the Federal government’s recent political spill a change has come that will certainly be welcomed by most of the forestry industry as well as Tasmanians. Richard Colbeck has been given the portfolio of Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources assuming responsibilit
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National Forestry planned Canberra launch

Australia’s ‘new look’ government is due to launch the National Forest Industries Plan in September 2018. The plan is to be released by the Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources Senator Anne Ruston, who remains responsible for forestry.  Source: Timberbiz The developm
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QUT program tackles production challenges in manufactured timber

A new pilot program has been launched by Weathertex and Queensland University of Technology (QUT) to understand the chemical changes that take place during the production of external timber cladding. Sources: FWPA, Timberbiz A collaboration between industry and academia, the intended
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Mainstream media taken to task for negative slant on forestry

A recent article in ‘The Age’ shows how easy it is for the mainstream media to feed negative perceptions about the native forest industry, according to forestry writer and consultant, Mark Poynter. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz Mr Poynter, in an address to the National Timber Counci
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Labor’s promised forestry plan – science over hysteria

The federal Labor Party has promised a forestry plan that emphasises science over environmental hysteria, and includes carbon farming and bioenergy as chief ways for the sector to fight climate change. Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz “Labor’s principle – it has to be informed by the fact
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OFO maps its future growth in Australia and NZ

OneFortyOne Plantations(OFO) is consolidating its position as a new vertically integrated company, including potentially using bioenergy as it maps future growth in Australia and New Zealand. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The company’s executive general manger – forestry,
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Carter Holt Harvey in High Court with Shadowclad

A multi million dollar court action seeking damages from building products giant Carter Holt Harvey has been filed at the Auckland High Court. Sources: Newshub, Stuff NZ It is seeking at least NZ$40 million in damages on behalf of owners of properties constructed with Shadowclad. Shad
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Pine residue up for grabs in West Australia

About 60,000 tonnes of plantation pine residue is up for grabs over two years in Western Australia. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The WA Government has let a tender for the product, with the successful bidder or bidders expected to be announced this month. WA’s Forest Products Commi
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Please learn from the Greek tragedy

The Federal and State Governments must learn from the Greek fire tragedy before we experience another Black Saturday bushfire in Australia. That is the stark warning from the Institute of Foresters of Australia. Source: Timberbiz and IFA Bob Gordon, National President of the Institute
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The race to zero deforestation

Forests cover almost one-third of the world’s land area and over one billion people rely on them for their livelihoods. Source: Steve Nicholson, director of sustainability at Solaris Paper As of March 2017, nearly 450 companies had made 760 commitments to curb forest destruction in su
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LINX Cargo Care Group’s agreement to acquire Pedersen Group

LINX Cargo Care Group, and its subsidiary C3 Limited, has been successful in its bid to acquire Pedersen Group, a market leading provider of wood chipping and wood yard management services to pulp and paper mills, and forest owners in Australia and New Zealand. Source: Timberbiz Peder
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Leadbeaters still endangered but not so much by forestry practices

Leadbeater’s Possum (LP) should retain its status as “critically endangered” but more information and research is needed to finalise this designation, according to a federal government scientific body. Source: Phillip Hopkins for Timberbiz Future bushfires, triggered considerably by c
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Turbocharging forestry industries in Tasmania

The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) is launching a $10 million plan to turbo-charge forest industries in Tasmania, and specifically in the federal electorate of Braddon, ahead of the July 28 by-election poll. Source: Timberbiz “Forest industries are incredibly important
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Going Green Forests, Fire and a Flawed Conservation Culture

Bushfire policy, the nature of conservation and the implications for the timber industry form the key themes of a new book on native forestry. “Going ‘Green’: Forests, Fire and a Flawed Conservation Culture”, by forestry expert Mark Poynter was launched in Melbourne last Friday. Mr Po
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Private forestry forum

Opportunities for Southern Tasmania – a private forestry forum for landowners, foresters, processors and land-use managers will be held at the Royal Hobart Showground, Glenorchy on 8 August. Source: Timberbiz The forum, from 6-9.30pm, will be addressed by keynote speaker Guy Barnett,
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Forestry operations under microscope

The controversy surrounding the harvesting of a coupe at a traditional timber town, Noojee in West Gippsland, highlights the issues facing the native forest industry. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz. A full hearing of the Federal Court, likely in February, will hear a claim by the Fri
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New online platform maps Australia’s renewable energy hotspots

A new online platform called AREMI identifies the location, availability and volume of biomass, and has been flagged as a pivotal tool to boost investment in Australia’s renewable energy sector. Source: Timberbiz Businesses and investors now have access to a data-rich platform which m
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American forest model could prove its worth for Australia

American group The Conservation Fund, which combines protecting forests and creating jobs in partnership with business, offers a model that Australia could follow. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz That was the key message of the Vice-President of The Conservation Fund, Robin Murphy, in
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Frame conference wrap-up

Australia now has the third highest number of tall buildings in the world made from wood. More than 50 buildings in Australia have been built from engineered timber in the past five years, with Australia now having the third highest number of tall buildings in the world made from wood
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Forestry innovation research grants open

The Australian and Tasmanian governments are supporting advances in a sustainable and productive forestry industry with wood product innovation they hope will grow the sector. Source: Timberbiz Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Anne Ruston, and Tasmanian
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VAFI dinner a premier pre-election event

The Victorian Association of Forest Industries Annual Dinner will be held on 19 October at the RACV Club, Melbourne. Source: Timberbiz One of the premier events for the state’s forest and wood products industry and of particular significance with 2018 being a state election year, the
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Landmark Australian genetic technology boosts tropical eucalyptus plantations

Australia-based forestry company New Forests will use landmark Australian genetic technology to boost productivity in its tropical eucalyptus plantations. By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz New Forests has forged a partnership with Gondwana Genomics, a private company founded in 2014 wit
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Housing growth continues and Victoria leads the way

Australia’s housing approvals surged in March, rising 9.2% compared with February, totalling 19,452 separate approvals. While the monthly data was positive, the big stories are that free-standing house approvals are still growing and Victoria’s approvals remain at record levels. Sourc
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Mt Gambier research hub up and running

The new National Institute of Forest Products Innovation has kicked into gear in South Australia, with an inaugural meeting of its industry-driven advisory committee electing Tammy Auld as Chair and planning a workshop to discuss the research priorities and strategy with all intereste
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National Farmers Federation on a mission to investigate farm forestry

Representatives from the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) and the National Farmers Federation (NFF), including AFPA Chair Greg McCormack and NFF President Fiona Simson visited New Zealand to examine farm forestry operations near Rotorua. Source: Timberbiz The joint delega
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Top 5: Market Points from IndustryEdge

513,811 bdmt – projected woodchip exports from Australia in April 2018, measured in bone dry metric tonnes, based on IndustryEdge’s unique vessel tracking and analysis -$23.03/m3 – the February 2018 discount for softwood log exports that were <15 cm diameter. Their exports averaged
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Next generation forest plantation investment

Institutional investors, superannuation funds and trusts are a likely source of funds for a new venture by universities and industry that aims to establish tree plantations to meet Australia’s growing demand for wood. Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The immediate focus is on Gippsland an
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Concerted push for contract extensions

The Victorian Association of Forest Industries (VAFI), has thrown its support behind its members’ drive to extend their contracts with VicForests, the state government’s commercial forestry arm. From Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz Tim Johnston, the chief executive of VAFI said processor
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G6 increase pressure on Vic Government

Six Gippsland sawmills have renewed pressure on the Victorian Government, urging Premier Daniel Andrews in an Open Letter to save jobs, protect regional communities and return confidence to the timber industry. Source: Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz The G6, as the new group calls itself
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Top 5: Market Points from IndustryEdge

448,686m3 – Australia’s log exports in February 2018, dominated by 403,136m3 of softwood logs AUD14.895 million – the value of dressed sawn softwood imports to New South Wales in February 2018, on a free-on-board basis 12.4% – growth in the value of timber windows imported to Australi
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South Gippsland votes against timber harvesting

VicForests said that it respected the sentiments of South Gippsland Shire Council, that voted against native timber harvesting in Mirboo North.  “We urge the Council and the community to continue talking with us,” Alex Messina, VicForests General Manager Corporate Affairs said.  “Ther
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Softwood chip prices up 21% in February

Australia’s woodchip exports totalled 580,785 bone dry metric tonnes (bdmt) in February 2018, with hardwood chips at 494,345 (bdmt). Softwood chips continued their recent strength, totalling 86,440 bdmt. Source: IndustryEdge, Timberbiz Latest data analysed for the Australian industry
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Security of supply

Landscape-scale forest planning and security of supply are key demands of the Victorian forestry industry for the next generation of the 20-year regional forest agreements (RFAs). By Philip Hopkins for Timberbiz All five Victorian RFAs, which are to be finalised by March 2020, must re
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RFAs finally signed for Victoria

Victoria’s forest industry jobs and the environment have been assured certainty with the Australian and Victorian governments extending the Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) for East Gippsland, Central Highlands and the North-East regions. Source: Timberbiz The extension of the three
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Gippsland Forestry Expo linking forestry education and careers

Australia’s forestry industry is finding it difficult to attract qualified or experienced people to work in this interesting and rewarding sector. Source: Timberbiz This is despite the fact that Australia’s forest industry is a dynamic and sustainable provider of regional employment,
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New head of forest division for Stora Enso

Stora Enso has appointed Jari Suominen as EVP, Head of Forest division as of 1 January 2020. He will continue as a member of the Group Leadership Team. Mr Suominen has led Stora Enso’s Wood Products division since 2014. He has held several leadership positions in Stora Enso’s paper an
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Indonesia and EU forest governance plan is working

The EU and Indonesia embarked on an ambitious journey to improve forest governance and promote trade in legal timber over a decade ago. Recently the two parties celebrated the third anniversary of a key result in that work, the launch of the world’s first ‘FLEGT’ licensing scheme, gua
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UN Climate Change Conference – today it’s about forestry

PEFC will have an important role to play on the fourth day of the UN Climate Change Conference COP 25, currently underway in Madrid. Today is set to be devoted to analysing the role of forests in the face of climate change. Source: Timberbiz In addition to the negotiations on the redu
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Rocky ground for building approvals

Building approvals fell by 3.7% in the three months to October 2019 after several months of positive growth according to HIA Economist Angela Lillicrap. The Australian Bureau of Statistics recently released its monthly building approvals data covering all states and territories. Sourc
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OFO keeps the Xmas spirit going with free trees

The team at OneFortyOne (OFO) is getting into the spirit of Christmas and giving away Christmas trees this December. For the fourth year in a row, OneFortyOne will have pine trees fresh from the forest available at its depots in Mt Gambier, Nangwarry, Mt Burr and Glencoe for the gener
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Xmas in Queensland under a pinus radiata

Staff and visitors to the Queensland Parliamentary Annexe are enjoying the fresh smell of pine from having a real Christmas tree located in the building’s foyer. Speaker of the Queensland Parliament, Curtis Pitt was thrilled for the Parliament to host a real Christmas tree. Source: Ti
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New Forests appoints property manager

New Forests has appointed Forest Enterprises Growth Limited as property manager for its New Zealand forestry assets in the Wairarapa and Southland areas. Forest Enterprises, based in Masterton, commenced its role on 1 December 2019. Source: Timberbiz Matt Wakelin, who recently joined
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Parkside Timber purchases two WA mills

More Western Australian jobs are expected to be created in the local forestry industry over the coming months with Queensland miller, Parkside Timber purchasing two South-West mills. Source: Timberbiz Parkside Timber, a Queensland-based company, has a long history of creating hardwood
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Timber framing campaign

The Australian Forest Products Association has launched a new education and promotion campaign called ‘Timber Framing – The Ultimate Renewable’. The campaign promotes the many benefits of using renewable timber framing products to supply chain partners, builders and consumers. Source:
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