High production forestry criteria consultation
About high production forestry
High production forestry zones are designated areas where trees are grown to produce high value timber products. They employ an agricultural style model, growing trees as a crop, but with a much longer rotations than in traditional agriculture.
Ecological forestry model
The ecological forestry model recommended by professor Bill Lahey has three parts that make up what is know as the triad:
- conservation zones – where no commercial harvesting of trees is allowed
- ecological matrix zones – where some harvesting is allowed but with a priority placed on protecting biodiversity and ecosystems
- high production forestry zones – where production of high value, fast growing timber is the focus to help ensure a viable supply of high value forest products from Crown land to support the forest sector
Each part of the triad is dependent on the other for the model to be successful.
Criteria for high production forestry zones
While the potential criteria are being discussed through this consultation, in general, high production forestry zones would ideally be:
- on land that has the fertile soil, climate and drainage to support rapid tree growth
- conveniently located near mills to help with efficient transportation of forest products
- situated with consideration given the existing land, for example abandoned agriculture fields or existing tree plantations could be good candidates
We are currently in the process of holding targeted stakeholder consultations. The next steps will be to refine the draft criteria based on feedback received. The criteria will be finalized later this year, with the process to identify sites to follow.