Woodchipping

Is Victoria's native forestry industry worth it at $5 million a job?

27 June 2016

The viability of Victoria's government-owned native forestry business has been thrown into doubt by a high-level analysis concluding it takes more than $5 million of investment in roads, machinery and equipment to create a single timber job.

Chops and chips hard to swallow for some Libs

14 August 2014

EARLIER this month VicForests, the state government-owned entity that manages logging in the state’s native forests, celebrated its 10th birthday with a party.

On the face of it the foresters had a lot to celebrate. In its first eight years, despite taking in hundreds of millions in revenue, VicForests made a profit of only $12.3 million and it hasn’t paid a dividend to its owners — the taxpayers — since 2007. Lately, however, the business seems to have turned the corner. In the financial year 2012-13 it made a profit of $802,000 on $106.3 million in revenue.

Forestry industry out on a limb

9 August 2014

In its heyday, the town of Cann River in the far east of Victoria was home to seven sawmills. But now just one remains .

Bob Humphreys, 70, has run it for 43 years. As a boy he spent school holidays working at the mill.

In all that time no changes have been as dramatic as those which have buffeted the industry in the past five years.

‘‘Our critical mass has shrunk to such an extent that sooner or later it will no longer be viable. And we're rapidly approaching that point, I reckon,’’ Humphreys says.

Victoria leads logging of native forests

8 August 2014

Victoria has become the largest producer of wood from logging native forests in the country, following a dramatic contraction in Australia’s native timber industry over the past decade.

The industry’s decline, and Victoria’s rise to the top, is in large part a result of native timber losing its prized international woodchip markets, with domestic and international plantations now favoured by buyers in Japan and China.

Loss of contract a blow for East Gippsland logging industry

13 May 2014

The future of native forests logging in East Gippsland is under a cloud after the main woodchip customer in the region announced it would not renew its contract with Victoria's state-owned timber company.

South East Fibre Exports, which owns a large woodchip mill at Eden in south-east NSW, has told VicForests it will not accept East Gippsland residual timber - the waste from native forest logging not turned into sawlogs - after this year.

Environmental concerns about logging in Victoria unabated

20 August 2013
Originally published at : 

TONY EASTLEY: Certainly CSG is on electors minds. As we travelled from the Liverpool Plains to Nimbin there were plenty of anti-CSG signs on the entrances to properties on the roads as we drove the seven hours north-east towards the coast and the Queensland border.
CSG, climate change and carbon pricing have dominated federal debate, shadowing other environmental issues.
In Victoria, environmentalists say the last of the unprotected old growth forest in east Gippsland is under threat from logging, as are many of the threatened species that rely on it. 

Industry pushes against the grain

4 February 2012

THE logs - thousands of them - are piled neatly in an old sawmill yard at Neerim South, Gippsland. To the casual observer they may look unexceptional. But the truck drivers, paid by the government to cart the felled trees from the state's forests, know better. This place is a dumping ground, albeit temporary. And the wood - representing about 100 hectares of trees - symbolises long-term problems with the management of Victoria's native forests.

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