Australia’s forest industries are today pledging that with the right policy settings, they will provide a massive 18 megatonnes of greenhouse gas mitigation every year from 2030, Chair of the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA), Mr Greg McCormack said today.

“Forest industries have built a project around six key possible sequestration options, which combined, can deliver 18 megatonnes of reduction of CO2 equivalents, in increasing quantity, but reaching a crucial 18 megatonnes in 2030,” Mr McCormack said.

“The six sequestration options are: 400,000 hectares of new plantations, ensuring existing plantations are replanted, use of more wood in construction, use of more bioenergy by industry, use of more biofuels for transport and the use of more sustainably sourced biomass in power stations.

“2030 is the target year by which time Australia has said it will have lowered greenhouse gas emissions by 26-28 per cent. To give some idea of the size of the commitment by forest industries today, in 2030, our 18 megatonnes will make up some 20 per cent of the national effort which is needed under current government targets.

“Forest industries have long been recognised for the sustainability of our operations in this country. Most Australians well understand that we replant and regenerate everything we harvest and that all forest products from paper to house framing timber is recyclable and renewable. To this point however, we have left this big environmental benefit of forest industries largely on the shelf.

“Our sector is one of the very few which can claim to be on the right side of the climate change ledger, and happily, the more we do, the better the outcome for the climate and the planet. If government partners with us by providing the policy framework to allow us to surge, we will have the ability to make a major contribution to the national emissions reduction targets,” Mr McCormack concluded.

Today, AFPA is launching 18 by 2030: Forest Industries help tackle Australia’s climate change challenge, the new document which guides the way forward towards our goal. The document is available here. More information and details are also available at: www.18by2030.com.au

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