The Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA) welcomes Planet Ark’s National Tree Day, Australia’s largest community tree-planting event, which will take place on 31 July. Since it started in 1996, more than 3.8 million people have planted 22.3 million trees and plants.
This is a great supplement to forest industries which themselves plant and regenerate up to 60 million seedlings, the equivalent of 100,000 football fields of trees and storing more than 900,000 tonnes of CO2, each and every year. Australia is considered world leading in its use of its forest resources.
Australia’s forest industries are recognised internationally as truly sustainable. The forest products industry is based on a renewable biological resource that contributes to long-term carbon emissions abatement. Atmospheric carbon is captured and stored in growing forests and in wood and paper products; emissions intensive materials such as steel, aluminium and concrete can be substituted with timber; and woody biomass can be used for renewable bioenergy.
Chief Executive Officer of AFPA Mr Ross Hampton said, “In a carbon constrained global economy, the use of renewable and recyclable forest products is vital, and could play a much larger role in Australia. It is broadly accepted internationally that sustainable forest industries are the environment’s best friend. We need to recognise that fact here, and turbo charge the opportunities for sustainably-sourced fibre to be produced in our own country,”
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC, 4th Assessment Report) stated that, ‘A sustainable forest management strategy aimed at maintaining or increasing forest carbon stocks, while producing an annual sustained yield of timber, fibre or energy from the forest, will generate the largest sustained mitigation benefit’.
“As the only carbon positive sector of the Australian economy, the forest products industry can be at the forefront of a renewable and sustainable economy,” said Mr Hampton.
For more information about National Tree Day, please visit http://treeday.planetark.org/.