“A decision by the Tasmanian Government to sell off the public eucalypt plantation estate will concentrate logging pressure on native forests as Forestry Tasmania seeks to maintain legislated wood supply volumes from native forests alone,” said Markets for Change CEO Peg Putt.

Markets For Change produced evidence that current sustainable yield plans of Forestry Tasmania rely heavily on a transition to utilizing the eucalypt plantations, sourced from Forestry Tasmania’s published report ‘Sustainable high quality eucalypt sawlog supply from Tasmania’s Permanent Timber Production Zone Land’ No 4 of March 2014: http://www.forestrytas.com.au/sfm/sustainable-high-quality-eucalypt-sawlog-supply-from-tasmanian-permanent-timber-production-zone-land

The document states that, in relation to high quality eucalypt sawlog:

‘In particular, over the period 2013/14 to 2026/27, the statutory minimum annual supply quantity of 137,000 cubic metres can be met from eucalypt native forests. Beyond that period, the predicted yield from eucalypt native forests fluctuates between about 90,000 and about 125,000 cubic metres per year, augmented by significant additional quantities of high quality eucalypt sawlogs from eucalypt plantations.’(p18)

A similar statement in relation to peeler billets says

‘that the target of 157,000 cubic metres per year can be met from eucalypt native forests throughout the relevant period, i.e. to 30 June 2027. Beyond that period, the predicted yield from eucalypt native forests fluctuates around an average of about 90,000 cubic metres per year until about 2072/73,’ (p19)

It outlines that the shortfall would come from eucalypt plantations – on the proviso that the plantation supply is suitable for the end needs of customers.

“Forestry Tasmania is reliant on the eucalypt plantations to enable them to continue to supply the minimum sawlog quota past 2027, if they confine their activities to the current Permanent Timber Production Zone land, but with those plantations unavailable will have to log the forests that were previously agreed to become secure reserves under the Tasmanian Forest Agreement,” Ms Putt explained.

“The Hodgman government has already legislated that the reserves will no longer be created and have provided for the future potential production forests, as they are now allocated, to be brought back into full industrial scale native forest logging as of April 2020 by an agreement between the Crown Lands Minister and the Minister for Forests.”

“Clearly this is the plan, that instead of utilising the plantations to make a transition out of logging native forests and to keep high conservation value native forests safe, the plantations will be sold to keep Forestry Tasmania afloat in the short term, and the previous future reserve land will be ruthlessly logged to keep Forestry Tasmania going in the longer term.”

“Meanwhile private interests make a killing from what is currently the public plantation estate.”

“It’s a nightmare for Tasmania’s outstanding native forests and the wildlife that depends on them,” Ms Putt concluded.
Markets for Change CEO Peg Putt