Key Services

NSW Forest Science is the forest research team within NSW Department of Primary Industries and provides evidence based services to forest managers and policy makers that underpin sustainable use of native forests and timber plantations. The team is research and technology focused, innovative and collaborative. Its core values are integrity, trust, service and accountability.

NSW forests comprise public and privately owned plantation and natural forests that are managed for economic (wood and forest products), social (jobs, recreation and cultural values) and environmental benefits (carbon, biodiversity and soil and water conservation). The Forest Science team has the knowledge, skills and expertise to assess and quantify forest values in accordance with rigorous scientific standards. Sustainable access is dependent on forests that are healthy, resilient and biosecure. The Forest Science team is committed to providing monitoring and surveillance services that promote forest health and biosecurity.

Forest Ecology & Biodiversity

Assessing sustainable management of forested landscapes: Image of an Eastern pygmy possum

  • Designing and analysing landscape scale biodiversity monitoring programs with a focus on new low cost technology
  • Assessing the implications of management practices on forest fauna such as koalas
  • Developing predictive spatial models to optimise management of threatened species in forests
  • Monitoring biodiversity in hardwood plantations
  • Collecting and managing long-term ecological datasets

Forest Resource Assessment

Improving the accuracy, efficiency and cost effectiveness of forest assessment over space and time: Image of Airborne Laser Scanning data over a Pinus radiata plantation

  • Evaluation and adoption of remote sensing technologies for forest monitoring
  • Assessment and characterisation of plantation and native forest timber resources
  • Forest growth modelling and wood quality assessment
  • Assessment of socio-economic values for forests

Forest Health & Biosecurity

Providing forest health and biosecurity services to plantation and native forest managers: Image of a parasitoid wasp used in the biological control of the sirex wood wasp

  • Detection and mapping of the extent and severity of pests and diseases in plantations and native forests
  • Technical advice on the management of pests and diseases
  • Research on the impact and management of pests and diseases
  • Biosecurity surveillance for exotic forest pests and diseases that incorporate NSW port environs
  • Liaison with state, federal and international forest health and biosecurity agencies and the forestry sector

Carbon in Forests, Wood Products & Bioenergy

Providing scientific backing for sustainable management of production forests and the climate benefits of using wood and wood products: Image of a pile of Pinus radiata logs

  • Investigating use of existing and new sources of biomass for bioenergy generation
  • Quantifying the carbon footprint of wood products and greenhouse balance of production forests
  • Specialist assessments of key wood properties
  • Guidance on carbon abatement benefits of forestry activities under the Emissions Reduction Fund and other mechanisms
  • Investigating carbon dynamics of wood and paper products in landfills
  • Investigating mechanical fuel load reduction in forests as an alternative fuel reduction approach

Technical Support

Services provided by Forest Science are underpinned by a suite of technical capabilities which include:

  • Field assessment and inventory - expertise in designing, establishing, measuring, data collation and analysis of field campaigns for a range of forestry disciplines
  • Statistical analysis - advice and assistance related to databases; survey design and sampling strategies; statistical programming, analysis and interpretation
  • GIS, mapping, spatial modelling & remote sensing - expertise in GIS and mapping; the application of data acquired from a range of remote and automated sensors; spatial data analysis and modelling
  • Cost-benefit analysis - Strong knowledge of the commercial forestry sector in NSW with expertise in resource valuation and cost benefit analysis
  • Scientific report writing - The Forest Science team has published over 300 peer reviewed scientific publications