A forestry sub-group will be established within PIARN. The focus of this sub-group will be on plantations and production native forests. Plantations include both traditional timber producing enterprises and newer operations that sequester carbon or produce bioenergy. Australia has 1.97 million ha of plantations, with reforestation of farmland an important new land-use. Reforestation for carbon sequestration is an important component of carbon mitigation strategies and if a national emissions trading scheme is enacted, activity in this area will also increase. As with other primary industries there are several issues related to climate change adaptation.
This sub-group will encompass the following activities:
(a) Establishment of a committee that annually meets face-to-face, and biannually by teleconference. This committee would tie into formal forest industry governance structures via representation from the following bodies: state and Commonwealth governments (via the Chair of the Forest and Climate Change Committee); National Association of Forest Industries; Australian Pulp and Paper Production Council; Australian Forest Growers; Forest and Wood Products Australia; Institute of Foresters; and CSIRO.
(b) Link and be cognisant of a range of existing plans and strategies including the National Climate Change and Commercial Forestry Action Plan (2009), the RD&E Strategy for the Forest and Wood Products Sector (2010), state and territory climate change adaptation plans, where appropriate and the Plantations for Australia the 2020 Vision.
(c) Activities of this group will include a national climate change adaptation conference for the production forest sector. This could proceed as either a stand-alone exercise, or as a stream within a larger climate change or forestry conference.