Plantation forestry involves planting trees which may be managed for commercial timber production or environmental purposes. Plantation establishment and management operations on both Crown land (including state forests) and freehold land are regulated and supported by the Department of Primary Industries through the Plantations Regulation Unit.
Regulation occurs through:
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.
The Code sets clear guidelines for plantation establishment and management. The Code details requirements for:
The Plantations Regulation Unit is a risk-based regulator that responds to alleged breaches under the Act and the Code. The Plantation Regulation Unit applies appropriate and proportionate enforcement responses, relating to its compliance activities, using sound decision-making processes.
The purpose of any enforcement response is to prevent further offending, either personally, in the case of an individual entity, or generally, in the case of other industry stakeholders and encourage future voluntary compliance. Enforcement may result in a financial penalty of some sort, for example, a monetary fine or the additional costs imposed by remediation works. An enforcement response aims to correct a lack of knowledge, poor or inadequate business practices, reduce economic drivers (that is, it's cheaper to not comply with the rules).
The Enforcement Response Guidelines features the decision-making process and has been developed to deliver transparency and accountability and provide clarity and confidence to stakeholders.