VicForests con­tin­ues to get the bal­ance right

Australian Forests and Timber - - NEWS -

VICFORESTS 2013 Sus­tain­abil­ity Re­port shows the or­gan­i­sa­tion’s on­go­ing com­mit­ment to bio­di­ver­sity man­age­ment, safety and sus­tain­abil­ity.

“Sus­tain­abil­ity drives our op­er­a­tions, from the com­plex pro­cesses used to de­ter­mine long-term har­vest lev­els, to the se­lec­tion of trees to be re­tained dur­ing har­vest­ing op­er­a­tions, through to re-grow­ing our forests fol­low­ing har­vest­ing,” said VicForests chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer Robert Green.

“In 2012-13, VicForests sub­mit­ted 5,726 ha of suc­cess­fully re­gen­er­ated for­est to the Depart­ment of En­vi­ron­ment and Pri­mary In­dus­tries and dur­ing the year spent ap­prox­i­mately $4.6 mil­lion on re­grow­ing an­other 3400 hectares of har­vested stands.

“The year also saw the an­nounce­ment of the tran­si­tion to lower har­vest lev­els in Ash forests with the re­lease of our an­nual Re­source Out­look.

“The change en­sures fu­ture har­vest­ing will con­tinue at a sus­tain­able level and fu­ture tim­ber sales will be based on the re­duced vol­ume.

“As a re­spon­si­ble for­est man­ager, it is vi­tal VicForests con­tin­ues to bal­ance the so­cial, eco­nomic and en­vi­ron­men­tal benefits pro­vided by the 6% of na­tive for­est in Vic­to­ria which is avail­able and suit­able for tim­ber pro­duc­tion,” he said.

Green said that 2013 was in many ways a year of con­sol­i­da­tion, fol­low­ing a num­ber of years deal­ing with large scale bush­fires and the im­pact of the Global Fi­nan­cial Cri­sis.

“Dur­ing the year we were able to fo­cus on how to make the busi­ness more sus­tain­able, more prof­itable and more ef­fec­tive in de­liv­er­ing the out­comes the com­mu­nity ex­pects.

“We fin­ished the year with a net profit af­ter tax of $802,000, our sus­tain­able For­est Man­age­ment Sys­tem was re­cer­ti­fied to the Aus­tralian Forestry Stan­dard, and we re­fined our method for fore­cast­ing fu­ture re­source avail­abil­ity.”

Green said the Sus­tain­abil­ity Re­port also showed bio­di­ver­sity man­age­ment and an im­proved un­der­stand­ing of the land­scape in which it op­er­ated was of great im­por­tance to VicForests. “We es­tab­lished a bio­di­ver­sity mon­i­tor­ing project in the ash forests around Powelltown in the Cen­tral High­lands. This long-term mon­i­tor­ing project seeks to in­ves­ti­gate how lo­cal fauna re­spond to tim­ber har­vest­ing across the highly man­aged forests of the Cen­tral High­lands.

“VicForests has also been an ac­tive mem­ber of the Lead­beater’s Pos­sum Ad­vi­sory Group. The group was formed to pro­duce rec­om­men­da­tions to Govern­ment on ways to en­sure the sur­vival of the Pos­sum while main­tain­ing a sus­tain­able tim­ber in­dus­try. “Ef­fec­tive en­gage­ment with the pub­lic re­mains a high pri­or­ity for VicForests. “We are com­mit­ted to build­ing trust in our op­er­a­tions and giv­ing stake­hold­ers the op­por­tu­nity to have in­put into our plans,” he said.

This was VicForests’ sev­enth Sus­tain­abil­ity Re­port and the sec­ond pre­pared in ac­cor­dance with the Global Re­port­ing Ini­tia­tive’s guide­lines.

VicForests … a grow­ing or­gan­i­sa­tion!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.