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Support for Tasmanian Wood Supply


26 Jul 2022

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A new $300,000 program has been launched that will invest in pilot projects seeking to address Tasmania’s wood supply shortage.  The Wood Supply Co-investment Program will include six projects that will be supported by Private Forests Tasmania to help address Tasmania’s short, medium and long-term wood supply shortfalls.

Individual projects will be supported with up to $50,000 in cash from PFT, with the successful applicants co-investing in the industry’s future through matching funds or in-kind support.

Private Forests Tasmania’s chief executive officer, Penny Wells, said the investment in the pilot projects would help to improve wood supply, particularly in the building and construction sector.

“With current global trade disruptions, high carbon emissions from imported produce (carbon miles), and Tasmania’s high standards for sustainably grown products, simply meeting our shortfalls with imported product is not the preferred sustainable strategy in the short, medium or longer-term,” she said.

“In recent years, significant work has been undertaken in Tasmania to identify industry and community supported priorities for addressing the need for additional wood.”

These priorities include:

  • new plantations integrated in the agricultural landscape to deliver additional wood in the long-term (trees planted now will provide additional resource from c. 2050 onwards);
  • utilising existing plantation resources to deliver additional wood in the short to medium-term (by transitioning short rotation plantations from pulp focused crops to solid wood/sawlog or engineered wood product regimes for domestic use from c. 2030-35 onwards); and
  • active management of private native forest resources – to deliver additional wood in the short to medium-term (through active management and selective harvest of the estimated 322,000 hectares of independent privately owned native forest, which is commercially viable and available for harvest under sustainable management regimes, from 2022 onwards).

Minister for Resources, Guy Barnett, said afforestation and actively managing existing private forest resources was a natural climate solution.

“Production forests can reduce the impact of climate change via carbon sequestration through timber products as well as carbon stored in soil and vegetation,” he said.

“Since its inception, PFT has been supporting projects and activities to facilitate establishment, maintenance, and development of Tasmania’s private forest resources to meet the Tasmanian community’s reasonable wood and fibre needs.

“Tasmania has an innovative forestry sector that champions sustainability. The Wood Supply Co-investment Program is further example of the industry working together to improve the state’s economy and ecology.”

Total funds available for the Program are a maximum of $300,000, including six pilot projects receiving assistance grants of up to $50,000 each from PFT.

The Program will allocate funding based on expressions of interest received from the Tasmanian forestry or allied sector in 2022.

Applications open July 19, 2022 and close August 19, 2022. Further details can be found under our GRANTS AND OPPORTUNITIES tab.