Green Triangle Forest Industries Hub launches growth plan

Friday 27 Sep 2019

 
The Green Triangle Forest Industries Hub (GTFIH) on Monday launched a AU$1 billion sustainable growth plan in which an extra 200 million trees will be planted by 2030, sequestering 3.6 million tonnes of carbon dioxide every year. The plan means the GTFIH will contribute 20% of the national growth target outlined in the Federal Government’s Forests for Future initiative.

The new ‘Green Triangle Forestry Industries Hub Action Agenda’ outlines how the industry will increase its economic output by more than 65% to meet projected local and global demand for wood and fibre products, making it a $2.5 billion industry for the region.

It will also support the Green Triangle with a focus on developing skills for the future ensuring a sustainable local wood fibre supply for construction of homes, furniture and household products, and contribute to South Australia’s and Victoria’s s economy and exports.

The plan was launched in Mount Gambier, in the heart of the Green Triangle region, by the nine companies which comprise the GTFIH before nearly 100 local, state and federal stakeholders. GTFIH Chair Linda Sewell said the plan demonstrated the long-term social, environmental and economic commitment of each of the Hub members to the industry and the Green Triangle.

“The Action Agenda is the Hub’s 10-year plan for growing future opportunities for the region, which will contribute to the longer-term prosperity of Green Triangle communities,” Ms Sewell said. “Our industry supports more than 7000 people in the Green Triangle Region by providing a sustainably-produced timber source, fulfilling the needs of people for a whole range of products essential to our daily lives. As stewards of our industry, we want to build on the successes of the past decade and create a significant fibre bowl. The industry has gone from strength to strength, continuing to support local communities and providing stable, long-term employment.”

Ian McDonnell, Deputy Chair of the Green Triangle Forest Industries Hub said the Hub will work collaboratively with governments, communities and landholders on implementing the Action Agenda and members will invest up to AU$300 million in local processing and manufacturing equipment upgrades to boost efficiency. “The GTFIH is planning for growth. Without action, we will not be able to meet future demand for timber products and there will be an overall reduction in Australia’s national plantation estate, which will negatively impact the industry and communities that rely on it,” he said.

“This supply constraint has been identified in the Federal Government’s plan, which is calling for one billion trees to be planted across Australia to meet demand and support jobs. We’re excited that our 200 million tree goal is a significant 20 percent of the national target.”

The GTFIH Action Agenda encompasses four core areas of activity which include a commitment to local processing, training and skill development for local people, genuine community engagement and a focus on sustainable initiatives to support future generations. The Action Agenda is an industry-led vision for growth over the next 10 years. Ms Sewell said the Hub is committed to consulting with stakeholders including the local community, government and other interested parties, to ensure that their needs and interests are addressed through the work of the GTFIH.

More detail on the Action Agenda and the GTFIH is available at www.gtfih.com.au.

Photo: Fed Member, Tony Pasin; Chair of GT Forest Industries Hub, Linda Sewell; Deputy Chair of GT Forest Industries Hub, Ian McDonnell

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