Plantation forestry involves planting trees which may be managed for commercial timber production or environmental purposes.
Authorised plantations must be managed in accordance with the Code of Practice:
All new plantations (except for plantations of less than 30 hectares which do not otherwise require development approval) must be authorised prior to their establishment. In addition, any existing unauthorised plantations are required to be authorised prior to commencement of forestry operations where they are more than 30 hectares in total on a landholding. Plantation owners may also choose to authorise plantations or proposed plantations under 30 hectares to access a streamlined process and avoid multiple consents.
Plantation Assessment Officers provide support and advice to the industry, both during the authorisation process and at other times. The authorisation process involves:
The Plantations and Reafforestation Act 1999 (the Act) provides a streamlined approval process for plantations whilst providing certainty for harvest on timber plantations. The Act and the Code have environmental standards that prevent soil erosion and land degradation and protect biodiversity and cultural values. An object of the Act is to facilitate plantations development on essentially cleared land.