A blast from the past – headlines from June 2005

Friday 12 Jun 2020

As part of our reminiscing from when we started with this newsletter 15 years ago, let’s take a look at what was happening here and overseas.

Fifteen years ago, 2005. At the beginning of 2005, the news was dominated by the "Boxing Day Tsunami" that devastated the coastlines of Indonesia, Sri Lanka, India, Thailand and nine other countries. In New Zealand, the Foreshore and Seabed legislation came into effect. The general election was the first contested by the Māori Party and Destiny New Zealand. It resulted in the continuation of the Fifth Labour Government of New Zealand. The Prime Minister at the time was Helen Clark and the country’s population had just ticked over the 4 million mark.

Australia’s population was 20 million and at the time, the Prime Minister was John Howard and a series of devastating bush fires hit South Australia. The US president was George W. Bush and the UK Prime Minister was Tony Blair. In June 2005, people were listening to We Belong Together by Mariah Carey. In this part of the world, Axel F by Crazy Frog was in the top 5 hits. War of the Worlds, directed by Steven Spielberg, was one of the most viewed movies released in 2005 while Revenge of The Sith by Matthew Stover was one of the best-selling books. As an added extra this week, we’ve also included a few headlines in a story below, that appeared 15 years ago when we first started. It is an age ago but just feels like yesterday.

And going way back into our archives, included below is a cross section of headlines drawn from our June 2005 issues of Friday Offcuts – where we all started.

Kyoto disaster predicted for NZ Government

New Zealand is highly likely to miss its Kyoto targets, at great cost to taxpayers and consumers, says the Forest Owners Association. In the last three years there has been a dramatic decline in new forest plantings, says association president Peter Berg. "If it continues, New Zealand won't have the 33 million tonnes of surplus carbon dioxide credits the government hopes to trade on international markets." Mr Berg says the average new rate of new forest planting for the last 30 years has been 44,900 hectares a year. In 2002, it dropped to 22,000 ha and last year to 10,600 ha, with forward orders placed at tree nurseries indicating a further decline this year.

NZ forest growers adopt national standard

After five years of negotiation, the New Zealand forest industry has a national standard for sustainable plantation forest management. NZ Forest Owners' Association (NZFOA) environmental spokesperson Peter Weir says the standard formalises management practices in what is arguably the most environmentally friendly production forest industry in the world. Since 1991, forest owners have sought to obtain Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification for their forests using interim internationally prescribed standards. At present, 620,000 hectares or 34 per cent of the country's total plantation area meets the council's standards. "The industry remains hopeful of FSC endorsement of the New Zealand standard, but after five years of negotiation, the NZFOA decided that a standard should now be implemented," says NZFOA president Peter Berg.

Boral acquires AU$25 million of NSW sawmills

Boral Timber, a division of the publicly listed Boral company has acquired Fennings Timber on the North Coast of NSW, with a flooring plant at Gloucester and a sawmill in Walcha and the NSW South Coast sawmiller, Davis & Herbert. It is reported that Boral paid about AU$25 million for the two companies plus inventories. Boral now controls about 65 per cent of the State's high quality sawlogs from Forests NSW plus a large proportion of those from private plantations.

Weyerhaeuser sawmill expanding

Weyerhaeuser Australia's Tumut sawmill plans to spend AU$20 million over the next 18 months to boost log capacity by 50 percent to 750,000 cubic metres. The company is preparing an environmental impact statement and development application for the project, which follows close on the heels of an AU$36 million upgrade.

Kyoto lobby to attack NZ Government with $2 million campaign

A forestry lobby group is planning a $2 million dollar election year advertising campaign attacking the New Zealand Government's handling of forestry in regard to the Kyoto protocol. The budget for the anti-Government campaign is nearly twice that spent by the largest opposition party last election.

New CEO of A3P appointed

A3P Chairman, Mr. Nick Roberts announced that Mr. Neil Fisher has been appointed Chief Executive Officer of A3P. Mr. Fisher will replace Ms Belinda Robinson, the inaugural CEO of A3P, who has been appointed Chief Executive of the Australian Petroleum Production and Exploration Association. Mr. Richard Stanton will be Acting CEO until Mr. Fisher takes up the position on 1 August 2005.

Ensis becomes one of the world's largest forestry research organisations

The joint venture between CSIRO Forestry and Forest Products (FFP) and New Zealand's Scion (formerly Forest Research) - ensis - will soon become one of the world's largest integrated forestry and forest products research organisations. Ensis will incorporate FFP's remaining R&D units to create three new strategic business units (SBUs) - Forest Biosecurity and Protection, Sustainable Productive Forestry and Integrated Environmental Forestry - thereby almost doubling its staff to 320 and increasing its projected annual income to around $A55M.





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