No one could have made a bigger mess of the problem than has just been announced. Small voluntary cut back over umpteen years, introduce cable logging in steep old growth forests, hand out another huge swag of subsidies to a dying industry, allow unlimited woodchipping to continue, consider large consumers of wood like charcoal plants and biomass burners to be set up when STILL, no one knows how much is out there.
Logging regrowth for chips
So maybe the government is right after all – woodchip volumes will drop as they wipe out the best of the wildlife-rich forests. But then maybe not. It could as easily rise as they start to expand their ‘thinnings’ operations in 20-30 year old quality regrowth – ie transforming our poor recovering regrowth into single species pulpwood plantations to compete with the overseas markets.
$800,000 for Daishowa
Before Christmas, Bracks handed over $800,000 to this region to help Daishowa plunder the underaged regrowth from 20-30 years back. Daishowa like this stuff as it’s white and soft and uniform and easy to process. That’s their preferred booty. The ‘thinnings’ of regrowth has seen NSW crews employed (few local people) by Daishowa. Daishowa now heads up the new private logging company in the region – Eastern Syndicated Logging. Their crews have been responsible for very high damage of retained trees – they seem to take the very best and leave crap standing to grow on as future sawlogs. That’s another issue again – the plantationification of native forests by intensive management. If the government hands more money to the thinnings program, it will employ 40 people maximum.