More than 2000 hectares of southern pine plantations near Grafton are now in public hands, after Forestry Corporation of NSW bought the timber rights to plantations established under contract for a private company. General Manager of Forestry Corporation’s Softwood Plantations Division Mike Beardsell said the purchase delivered a long-term boost to timber production in the region.
“Forestry Corporation is already the largest plantation manager in NSW, with more than 220,000 hectares of exotic pine plantations, which is roughly the size of the ACT,” Mr Beardsell said.
“By purchasing the timber rights to this plantation, we have increased plantations in our Grafton Management Area by 20 per cent, bolstering the supply of locally-grown renewable timber into the future.
“What’s exciting about this purchase is that every time the trees in this plantation reach maturity and are harvested for timber, Forestry Corporation will replant them with another crop of trees.
“That means both the local community and the various industries that rely on timber, from timber mills to home builders, can be assured that this land will continue producing sustainable timber for generations to come.
“Over the past three years, Forestry Corporation has made a substantial investment in expanding state-owned timber plantations, purchasing close to 10,000 hectares of plantations and plantable land to increase production of locally-grown, renewable timber and wood products.”
State-owned pine plantations currently produce enough structural lumber to construct a quarter of the homes built in Australia each year as well as supplying renewable pulpwood for paper and packaging.