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22nd February 2021 Newsletter
It was pleasing to get some feedback to my column in the last newsletter. I often write columns with the goal of seeking feedback. This is one way the council is guided to act on what members are thinking about and what his important to them. Therefore I once again ask members to send their thoughts in on any topic to Raewyn at firstname.lastname@example.org and start a debate in the members comments of this newsletter.
This week council are meeting and finalising next years budget. Once again we are looking to dip into reserves as we work on projects to complete the valuation standards, convert the hand book to online, move the journal online and potential work towards becoming the delegated authority for the forest advisors bill. I would be interested in hearing from members what other areas they believe NZIF need to work on to give additional benefit to members. We are holding regular meetings with DG TuR and the Minister to ensure we are aware of policies which may effect members and we continue to work hard on submissions, providing CPD, working with local sections on interesting meetings, along with providing help to our Special Interest Groups; Future Foresters; Women in Forestry, Forest and wood processing and to our Subcommittees; Valuations, Fire, Fellows and Ethics. If any member wants to get more involved in a special interest group or a subcommittee please let me know and I will point you in the right direction.
As you may be aware a big part of our budget is the annual conference and I am pleased to see last years conference committee agree to run the cancelled 2020 conference this year. The conference will be in Masterton on 28th and 29th of June. On Sunday the 27th there will be CPD sessions and the AGM. I encourage all members to attend the conference and as many as possible to attend the AGM and CPD sessions. A reminder, CPD will be required to become a registered forest advisor, so I suggest all members start planning to get their CPD hours up. We are currently seeking Sponsorship for the conference and I thank those who have already agreed to sponsor the conference. If you are interested in sponsoring the conference please contact Jay (email@example.com) or myself to discuss options or ask for a sponsor pack.
Your council exists to serve you the members. I encourage you all to let us know what you want us to work on; and if you have time to volunteer to help please do. Our sector is going through a period of change and it is important we, the professionals, are fully involved during the change and working hard to ensure we advance professional standards and contribute to improving good forestry practice. I fully believe more heads thinking on topics is better than less and as such welcome all comments / thoughts / ideas from members.
I note the Presidents comments last week re native vs radiata. I believe we are fast approaching a point in NZ where the public, rightly or wrongly, will not accept very large, new areas of radiata forest. It may sequester carbon faster, provide more income and jobs but it has a major perception problem. It’s a bit like the dairy industry – they could argue it should expand but is likely to reduce (dumping Nitrogen heavy waste on farms like refuse doesn’t help your cause like slash washing down rivers).
The CCC still sees an important role for commercial forestry with another 300 – 400,000 ha of radiata forest being needed. In todays world of high land prices and limited labour this may prove to be a hard ask anyway in the next 10 to 15 years. Compare forestry to other commercial rural landuses which are nearly all going backwards in area in the report.
I believe as an industry we need to embrace the call for more native forest – there is a huge amount of land out there that I for one would be terrified to plant and then try and harvest in todays and tomorrows world. Give the customer what they want and they are likely to become more sympathetic and accepting of you overall.
Much of the CC Report is commendable.
What I think is not, is commentary to wind back planting highly productive, highly valuable to NZ and very long life pine trees and suggest instead large scale (700,000 ha) in pure native plantations highly exposed to wind, sun and goats.
The native relative cost and (importantly) survival issues have not been considered.
They should consider how artificial that is - how did God ensure survival of native seedlings over 20 million years? It certainly was not my planting out on steep grassland.
The last newsletter included a comment from me on the Climate Change Commission
The last newsletter included a comment from me on the Climate Change Commission, the ETS and Forest Policy. I subsequently received feedback emails from five members, sent to me, but not the newsletter. While it is nice to receive these, I submit items because I hope they will motivate other members to write to the newsletter and support or criticise what I have to say, to introduce other viewpoints, correct statements, etc. In that way we can all benefit from our professional association in an informal and free manner. I also know from when I was on the Council, newsletter discussions can be an important way in which Council gets an idea of what is exercising members minds, where members support or disagree with what the Council is doing, etc. That helps the Council when making submissions, interacting with politicians, planning the annual conference and so on.
I tried to encourage the five who contacted me to send their comments to the newsletter. As I write this I don’t know if any of them have taken up the challenge – we shall see. But I thought I would share some of the views that were presented.
Two of them just made a two word response, which I interpreted as being in agreement with what I had written – that was encouraging.
The next wondered if NZIF might facilitate providing a series of examples of ‘forestry’ fulfilling a range of purposes, that could be used to show the public the very diverse range of forestry practices, forest benefits, etc. They also commented “It is very frustrating to see articles like yours and then no follow up. It’s such an important topic”. My response to that is, well, if you don’t submit it to the newsletter, how are members going to get the idea of following it up?
Response no 4 commented that my analysis and forestry sector conclusions supported the thinking of the 1 Billion Trees Fund, and asked if I would agree to wider distribution than NZIF members. I prefer to let NZIF members use the newsletter for more informal discussion amongst members. It allows us to float ideas, items can be put together quickly without checking every statement (and I have found some mistakes in my article), etc. Sure, some members do distribute newsletter comments more widely, but that is not a formal distribution.
The final comment was not happy at all with my analysis. To quote:
“Your knowledge of carbon accounting towards meeting NZs emissions targets is embarrassingly poor, however this doesn’t stop you presenting such authoritative communications because this is what some Registered Forestry Consultants do even when the topic is well outside their knowledge sphere and experience.
If this dissertation had of been presented as a commercial communication to a client of mine, I would have had no hesitation in bringing about a complaint to the NZIF Registration Board of incompetence.”
I do not claim to know all the ins and outs of carbon accounting. But I have frequently maintained that the complexity of them, and the fact they have been imposed on individual forest owners rather than used just to account for the whole country’s obligations, is just another problem with the ETS. My item was definitely not a commercial communication to any client – it was a short article to engender discussion amongst members. I do not purport to be a registered forestry consultant, but I am proud to be a registered member of NZIF. I have also suggested the person who sent the comments to me would do well to make themselves familiar with NZIF Rule 38.
NZIF Registered Forester
Registration Board member
Geoff is the newcomer to the Registration Board and says he looks forward to representing the views of the Institute membership, however they are presented to him.
Geoff is one of a vanishing breed – foresters trained under the New Zealand Forest Service training scheme who attended an overseas forestry school. He was the last Kiwi to graduate from the Oxford School of Forestry Science.
After graduation, Geoff worked in a number of New Zealand Forest Service positions in Head Office, the Forest Research Institute, Waipa Sawmill, Kaingaroa Forest, the Forestry Training Centre and in Dunedin. He joined Dunedin's Tasman Forestry Ltd in 1981 and worked for nine years in Otago/Southland, Nelson/Marlborough, and as a visiting lecturer at the School of Forestry. After that he was forest manager for the Christchurch City Council, then the Wellington Regional Council.
In 2000 Geoff became self-employed and successfully applied for recognition as a registered forestry consultant. His main areas of consulting work have been in rural fire project management, rural fire protection reviews and environmental (mainly FSC certification) auditing. Geoff joined the NZIF in 1970, and held the positions of Newsletter Editor and Councillor between 1982 and 1988. He was Secretary for the then Wellington Section from 2001 to 2003, and has been on the organising committees for several Institute conferences.
Geoff was elected as a Fellow in 2012.
Call for Nominations of new Fellows
To nominate a new Fellow by 3rd May, please Read more and fill in the form
Log Export Market Update from Chris Rayes, Marketing Director, AVA Timber
Wednesday 24 February 2021, CBRE, Level 12 Harbour Tower (Old ASB Tower), 2 Hunter Street, Wellington
2020 was an interesting year for log exports with the industry shut down for a month in the Covid lockdown. 2021 has started with firm log markets in China so what is driving falling inventories and strong demand in China, and will this continue for 2021?
What is likely to develop in Korea and India? What are the impacts on these two markets of the China / Australia trade war?
What is going on in the freight markets. Have the changes in fuel regulations had any serious effect on freight rates. Why are rates increasing so rapidly now?
Chris Rayes, Marketing Director for AVA Timber Ltd, ( a Joint Venture between Hancock and Rayonier Matariki Forests) has once again kindly agreed to present his views on the log export markets of China, Korea and India, and to take us through current and future developments. He has also agreed to take us through the rationale, structure and function of the newly formed AVA Timber, Australasia’s largest log exporter.
The lifts close off at 5.30 so try to get there on time. We will have a notice in the lobby with a mobile number to ring for latecomers up to 5.45pm
Please RSVP to Peter Hill at firstname.lastname@example.org
Overseas Investment Office presentation
Save the date........
Wednesday 21 April 2021, Hawkes Bay
Venue: East Pier, Ahuriri, Napier
Members of the Overseas Investment Office will provide an update on the overseas investment regime and how it relates to investment in forestry.
Sponsorship: Venue hire, sponsored by - FMNZ Ltd, Refreshments prior to meeting sponsored by - Colliers HB
NZIF 2021 Conference
27th to 29th June 2021
Copthorne Hotel & Resort Solway Park
We are excited to be presenting a varied and inspiring lineup for our next conference to be held in Masterton in the mighty Wairarapa. We all know how passionate our sector work force is about what we do, and we are seeking to showcase some of this pride with our lineup of speakers and CPD sessions.
Royal Society Newsletter
Kia ora from Royal Society Te Apārangi | Issue #1126 Read more
EDS seeks reset of forestry policy to support Banks Peninsula indigenous regeneration
In a new report released today, the Environmental Defence Society (EDS) has called for a reset of government forestry policy to support indigenous forest regeneration on Banks Peninsula and dis-incentivise exotic forestry expansion.