Responsible Wood wishes to add our voice to the many expressing dismay at the Victorian Government’s announcement to bring forward the end of sustainable native forest management.
Sustainable native forest management provides a broad range of benefits to Victorian communities, including well paid employment in regional areas, economic development, recreation facilities and opportunities, all while protecting environmental values for future generations.
Responsible Wood certified forests, such as those managed by VicForests, are underpinned by the requirements of the Australian Standard for Sustainable Forest Management, that ensure world-class best practice management and are based on science not ideologies. Importantly Responsible Wood certification ensure that forests remain forests, for generations to come and biodiversity values are protected and, in many cases, enhanced. As the demand for high-quality hardwood timber continues to increase, these products will now need to be imported from overseas forests, with most likely less rigorous forest management standards.
Responsible Wood is dismayed at this unexpected and incomprehensible decision, which is counter to the intent of the previously announced Victorian Forestry Plan, and it fails to comprehend the motivation of the Victorian Government in making such a decision. This decision has significant implications for a number of Responsible Wood’s member companies and their workers.
Responsible Wood wishes to pass on our concerns and condolences to the thousands of workers and their communities who are greatly impacted by this decision and the businesses and supply chains that rely on a sustainable hardwood timber supply for their continued operation.
Most of all Responsible Wood wishes to recognise the dedication of forest managers and forest scientists that have dedicated their lives to improving Victoria’s forest management system and delivering world-class sustainable, environmental benefits that Victoria has every right to be proud of.