Forestry Australia has welcomed a new study that highlights the significant value and benefits that state forests deliver for positive environmental, recreational, social and commercial outcomes.
Assessing the net benefits of multiple use native forest management in Queensland found that state forests managed for multiple uses in South and Central Queensland delivered additional benefits and superior social outcomes over the long term when compared with benefits provided by national parks.
Forestry Australia President Bob Gordon said that ‘’multiple-use state forests provide a diverse range of benefits for society, including many recreation pursuits such as mountain biking, horse riding and fossicking; beekeeping for honey production and pollination services; grazing in some regional areas; and timber production from sustainable harvesting practices.’’
‘”This study also highlights that multiple-use management can maintain biodiversity conservation and reduce emissions through increasing carbon capture in forests and storage in harvested wood products.
“This study helps confirm what forest scientists have known for a long time, and what Traditional Owners of our land have known for much longer – that forests can deliver multiple outcomes and thrive when they are cared for and actively managed.
“Furthermore, selective timber harvesting in South and Central Queensland provides state revenue that helps to offset management costs and pay for bushfire prevention, recreation assets, and biodiversity conservation across the wider native forest estate.
“In these ways, multiple use management of state forests complements the formal Protected Area status for national parks. Together, they provide for a comprehensive range of sustainable ecosystem services across South and Central Queensland. This complementarity is dependent upon the adequate resourcing across all public forest tenures.
‘Forestry Australia advocates for active and adaptive management across all forest land tenures including state forests, national parks and private forests.
“Forests deliver many social, cultural, financial and environmental benefits, but their capacity to continue providing these benefits depends on effective management and conservation. Such a wide range of benefits needs a wide range of expertise to manage them. It’s vital that experts from varying fields collaborate to deliver what’s needed to look after our forests so society can continue to enjoy them for generations to come.”
The cost-benefit study was commissioned by the South & Central Queensland Regional Forestry Hub with funding from the Australian Government, Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry. The study was conducted by Indufor and Natural Capital Economics. The report can be found here.
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