Friends, as we are now into June, it is important to further update you on the Forest Industry Taskforce (Taskforce). I urge you to read the following information, and please don’t hesitate to contact me to discuss if needed.

The Core Group has met regularly, deepening a shared understanding of the key areas of inquiry by receiving presentations and evidence from experts on wood modelling, plantations, and fire, in addition to receiving departmental advice around the Leadbeater’s possum recovery plan, native vegetation, biodiversity, and biodiversity decision support tools.

Throughout the workshops held thus far, Taskforce members have progressed their thinking about a likely future within the context of certainties and uncertainties. There is an overarching framework of existing political structures, business investment and global markets. An identified certainty is that humans will impact on the environment and that forests, with competing interests, will continue to be important. Another certainty is the growing demand for wood fibre and wood products, and that people will continue to need jobs. Further certainties have been identified in relation to climate change, bushfires, drought, as well as changes in technology.

Importantly, many factors about the future have been deemed to be uncertain in terms of the driving forces with respect to conservation, industry and jobs. As a consequence, the Taskforce continues to undertake analysis through the frames of “business as usual” and “durable transformation”.

In line with the Terms of Reference, the Taskforce Core Group is now progressing the scope and direction of the content for a report to the Premier, exploring opportunities for change in the context of reaching durable outcomes through consensus decision-making.

Once again, I assure you that I, and other industry Taskforce representatives, are working tirelessly to ensure that our industry continues to be strong and sustainable well into the future.

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