Planting 400,000 hectares of new timber plantations won’t only help Australia achieve sovereign capability in timber and fibre supply – it would also help us achieve net zero emissions by 2050 and grow regional jobs, Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) Chief Executive Officer Ross Hampton said today.
Preliminary new AFPA modelling shows that planting an additional 400,000 hectares of timber plantation forests by 2030 would offset 200 million tonnes of CO2-e by 2050.
“In real terms that is equivalent to the total emissions produced by almost 50 million cars in a year,” Mr Hampton said.
“This new modelling shows that growing Australia’s timber plantation estate is key to reaching net zero by 2050 and boosting our self-sufficiency for much needed sustainable timber products, like new house frames, of which we will be 250,000 short by 2035 if we don’t plant more trees.
“Australia’s renewable forest industries cannot be left out of the Federal Government’s plan for reaching net zero, because the reality is the target will be almost impossible to achieve without growing nature-based solutions.”
Mr Hampton said the Federal Government’s A Billion Trees for Jobs and Growth national plan, which commits to growing Australia’s timber plantation estate by one billion trees in key timber processing regions by 2030, is a welcome start to achieve this goal.
“Australia’s forest industries are ready to grow more timber with the right policies to achieve sovereign capability and fight climate change.
“The Federal Government has the opportunity to deliver a win/win/win scenario by boosting our declining plantation estate, growing regional jobs and contributing to Australia’s future economy,” Mr Hampton concluded.