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Publications archive - International Activities and Commitments

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Key departmental publications, e.g. annual reports, budget papers and program guidelines are available in our online archive.

Much of the material listed on these archived web pages has been superseded, or served a particular purpose at a particular time. It may contain references to activities or policies that have no current application. Many archived documents may link to web pages that have moved or no longer exist, or may refer to other documents that are no longer available.

Australia's report to the UNCSD - 1995

Implementation of Agenda 21
Department of the Environment, Sport and Territories, 1995
ISBN 0 6444 3152 0


Table 1 - Additional Information on Progress Towards Implementing the Statement of Forest Principles and Chapter 11 Of Agenda 21 - Australia's Forest Initiatives
Item Achievements Important Implementation Issues Intended Action
State of the Forests Reporting NFPS commits the Federal Government to preparation of a national State of the Forests report on a 5 yearly basis.
Tasmania- first State of the Forests report produced in 1993.
First report currently being developed. Report due in 1995.
NFPS Implementation Report Biennial summary of Federal and State/Territory Government achievements in implementing the commitments of the NFPS. The report for 1993 was released in 1994. Provides a cooperative reporting mechanism based on input from each government jurisdiction. Next report to be produced at the end of 1995.
NFPS implementation newsletter First issue of the National Forest Policy News published in June 1994. Newsletter aims to publicise progress of NFPS initiatives/implementation. Future newsletters to be published at half-yearly intervals
Old growth and wilderness surveys First coverage of National Wilderness Inventory complete in most States:

NSW - old growth forest methodology development commenced and flora and fauna surveys undertaken in north-east NSW.
Victoria - State-wide inventory program now under way to produce standardised maps of forest stand classes; old growth studies completed in East Gippsland and Central Highlands; public land values (including wilderness) surveyed through the Land Conservation Council public land use planning process; Joint Regional Assessments of National Estate values in East Gippsland and Central Highlands completed.
Queensland - assessing forests within biogeographic regions in accordance with NFPS to identify areas to be managed for nature conservation/cultural heritage values, and areas to be managed for sustainable timber production. Methodology for mapping old growth forests produced in collaboration with a national expert panel.
WA- Surveys of national estate values for the Southern Forest Region (one of three forest regions in the south west) completed.
States progressing surveys in accordance with NFPS. Surveys results will provide data for assessment of comprehensive forest reserve system.
South East Forests Agreement. Intergovernmental agreement signed in December 1993 addressing management and conservation issues for the forests of South East New South Wales. Formalises arrangements for protection of forests and future management arrangements for forest reserves and multiple use forests in the region. Regional Consultative Committee formed to oversee expenditure of $10m under agreement to promote forest conservation & ESD.
Better integrated and coordinated decision making processes in States NSW - Natural Resources Audit Council established.
Victoria - Discussions being held on IGAE accreditation of State processes.
Queensland - Greater Planning Certainty Process established for delineation of conservation and other resource values of forests.
Tasmania - Public Land Use Commission established.
State measures to complement and fulfil undertakings in NFPS. States will seek accreditation for particular processes under IGAE.
Removal of export controls on private and plantation grown unprocessed wood Intention is to remove uncertainty for plantation investments created by existing export controls on unprocessed wood. Removal of controls subject to the application of codes of practice to protect environmental values. Existing codes of practice for plantations being examined to assess whether they provide an adequate basis for the removal of controls. Regulations to legislation to be drafted to remove controls pending Ministerial agreement.
Agreed principles for pricing and allocation of wood Principles include commitment to market based pricing, defined and transferable harvesting rights and flexible allocation systems involving competitive bidding arrangements. Individual States responsible for setting pricing and allocation systems. All States have adopted more competitive systems. Moves to more market based pricing and allocation systems continue to be refined.
Accounting Standards Review Australian Accounting Research Foundation undertaking a study of accrual accounting conventions for long-term regenerative assets. Review currently under way. Results will form basis of accounting standards for forest agencies.
Support for private native forests NSW - active support for private native forests thorough Catchment Management Committees;
development of a code of practice for logging on private lands.
Victoria - regulatory amendments provide for the application of the Code of Forests Practices for Timber Production to private land forestry operations;
Land for Wildlife Scheme has provided 13 part-time officers to assist landholders with management and restoration of natural vegetation.
Queensland - review of legislation for tree clearing and management being undertaken.
Tasmania - Private Forests, Tasmania, and the Private Forests Board established.
State initiatives will complement national taxation reviews and plantation programs. Monitor and assess private forestry resources and developments.
Clarification of the taxation treatment of forest plantations Draft ruling released by Australian Taxation Office (ATO) in February 1994. Will assist in promoting plantation investments. Final ATO ruling will be issued in 1995. Federal Govt will consider tax policy issues.
Promotion of plantation establishment NSW - Tree Forum to identify disincentives to plantation development on private land. Funding of $5 million provided for share farming plantations with State Forests and private landowners. Drafting of the Tree Plantations (Harvest Security) Bill which aims to encourage plantation establishment by removing the uncertainty associated with environmental impact assessment for plantation harvesting operations.
Victoria - amendment to planning schemes allows for 'as of right' plantation establishment on private land up to 40 ha in areas receiving more than 550mm annual rainfall; agroforestry networks and demonstration sites established; corporatisation of State-owned plantations came into effect in July 1993.
Queensland - Policy options paper on 'Tree planting for production and natural resources management' developed in 1994.
WA - agreement with overseas investors to establish 30 000 hectares of new plantations over next 10 years.
Program of joint venture developments under way. Further development of private plantation resources.
Paper identifies options Govt might consider to stimulate private sector investment to enhance regional development and employment opportunities. NFPS instrumental in verifying investments. Public consultation process to be completed before finalisation.Continued cooperation with private forest growers.
Federal Government purchasing of environmentally preferred paper products Federal Government is reviewing its purchasing policies to provide for purchases of environmentally preferred paper products. Consultations with industry, unions and environment groups have been undertaken. Government to release revised purchasing guidelines.
National Forest Inventory Provides coordination and focus for the production of current, accurate and standardised information on the forest estate. Federal and State/Territory cooperation in the gathering and dissemination of forest data in a standardised form. Assisting with the completion of the first State of the Forests report in 1995;
completion of the first detailed and comprehensive inventory of the plantation estate. Ongoing support for regional forest data projects.
Environmental Resources Information Network Database of spatially related information on Australia's environment. On-line access to significant portions of the database through the Internet launched in 1994. Range of data held by the Network. Ongoing development of information network.
National Resource Information Centre Spatially referenced National Directory of Australian Resources datasets (NDAR) including information on forest databases and related data such as soils and land resources. Maintenance of data from the Resource Assessment Commission's Forest and Timber Inquiry and datasets from other key studies. Wide range of data and analytical services. Cooperative research, development and demonstration projects.
Cooperative Research Centres Tasmania - Centre for Temperate Hardwood Forestry established.
Victoria - Centre for Hardwood Fibre and Paper Science established.
Research aimed at improving forest management systems, wood quality, processes and product quality, postgraduate training, and promoting innovation in eucalypt forestry. Ongoing research programs as centres of excellence in temperate hardwood forestry and hardwood fibre and paper science.
National Pulp mill Research Program Review of current national pulp mill guidelines being finalised for submission to governments. Program underpins preparation of environmental guidelines for new pulp mills in Australia. Revised guidelines will assist in the assessment of environmental considerations for new pulp mills.
Promoting sustainable forest tourism Forest interpretation centres established in Victoria, Western Australia and Tasmania. Forest ecotourism activities incorporated in National Ecotourism Strategy released 1994. Tasmania - hosted World Ecotourism Conference in November 1994; Tourism discussion paper prepared and released for community input. Ecotourism strategies being developed with widespread community consultation. Ongoing development of forest based ecotourism activities consistent with ecologically sustainable development.
Occupational health and safety projects under Labour Productivity Improvement Program Projects undertaken included identification of the nature and extent of problems in the forest industries; development of a nationally consistent and comparable method of recording workplace injury and disease; development of a national workplace injury and disease reporting system for use in the forest industries; and development and trialing of national competency standards for the safe operation of hazardous machinery in the forest industries. Occupational health and safety are key issues in the forest industries. Ongoing development of occupational health and safety in forest industries.
Language and literacy projects funded under Labour Productivity Improvement Program Projects undertaken included identification of language and literacy competencies for the forest industries; development of strategies for improving language, literacy and numeracy competencies and trialing in a number of workplaces; development of a kit to raise awareness and promote language and literacy skills in the industry. Language and literacy issues a major problem in some parts of the forest industries. Ongoing development of language and literacy skills in forest industries.