Hon Reece Whitby MLA

Hon Reece Whitby MLA

Minister for Environment; Climate Action; Racing and Gaming

Hon Dave Kelly BA MLA

Hon Dave Kelly BA MLA

Former Minister for Water; Forestry; Youth

    Historic new plan to protect WA's forests

    18/10/2022 9:05 AM
    • Draft 10-year Forest Management Plan released for public comment
    • Preserves forests for future generations in the fight against climate change
    • Delivers on commitment to end native logging from 2024 

    Western Australians can now have their say on the draft Forest Management Plan 2024-2033, which delivers on the McGowan Government's historic decision to end native logging in our South-West.


    The move will preserve at least 400,000 hectares - an area 1,000 times the size of Kings Park - of karri, jarrah, and wandoo forests. This is in addition to the 1.6 million hectares of forest already protected.


    The only timber to be taken from our native forests will come from management activities designed to improve forest health, such as ecological thinning or clearing for approved mining operations, and infrastructure maintenance.


    The draft Forest Management Plan reaffirms the McGowan Government's commitment to act on climate change and protect biodiversity. Reducing deforestation and forest degradation rates is one of the most effective and robust ways to mitigate climate change.


    The Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions will engage with Noongar Traditional Owners to enter formal arrangements to manage the South-West conservation estate. This will mark a new era of collaboration - consistent with the South-West Native Title Settlement - to share Noongar and Western knowledge in caring for South-West forests.


    As previously announced, the McGowan Government is investing $80 million in the Native Forestry Transition plan to support workers, businesses, and communities transitioning out of the native logging industry into a future pathway.


    A record $350 million is also being invested in the expansion of the State's sustainable softwood timber plantations to support WA jobs and the local construction industry.


    The draft Forest Management Plan 2024-2033 - prepared by the Conservation and Parks Commission - also outlines approaches to bushfire risk management and access to domestic firewood.


    The public consultation period will run until 18 December, with community information events in regional locations.


    View the plan and make a submission at https://www.dbca.wa.gov.au/parks-and-wildlife-service/forests/forest-management-plan.


    Comments attributed to Environment and Climate Action Minister Reece Whitby:


    "This isn't a decision the Government has made lightly, but we must preserve our forests for future generations.


    "The science showing climate change is having and will have a devastating impact on our environment is well-established and cannot be ignored.


    "Safeguarding our forests through this plan will support sustainable, nature-based tourism in the South-West, which is a popular destination. 


    "This is a once-in-a-decade opportunity for the community to have its say on the way we care for our precious native forests."


    Comments attributed to Forestry Minister Dave Kelly:


    "The decision to end logging in our South-West reflects the changing attitudes of the community towards our native forests and builds on the legacy of the Gallop Labor Government to end old growth logging.


    "This does not mean an end to forest management activities - such as ecological thinning and approved mine site clearing - but an end to large scale commercial logging in our native forests.


    "Native timber sourced from these activities will continue to be available for products such as high value furniture, joinery, artisanal products, charcoal, and firewood post 2023.


    "We're committed to supporting the transition of workers, businesses, and communities linked to the native forest industry through the $80 million Native Forestry Transition plan."


    Environment and Climate Action Minister's office - 6552 6300

    Forestry Minister's office - 6552 6100