Gippsland Communities to Have Their Say on Forest Management
Communities in Gippsland are invited to have their say on the future management of Victoria’s forests.
Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning Regional Director Stephen Chapple said the first phase of engagement for the Regional Forest Agreements (RFA) modernisation program is in full flow, with an online survey available for input until 31 March 2019.
“This is part of a major program to modernise Victoria’s RFAs and the forest management system they accredit, including Gippsland,” Mr Chapple said.
“This process includes a clear commitment to work in partnership with Traditional Owners to deliver the RFA modernisation program and manage Victoria’s forests into the future.”
“This survey is giving communities an opportunity to provide their views on what they value in our forests, how forest management can be improved, and what they would like from forests into the future.”
“Existing RFAs were written more than 20 years ago and need to be updated to reflect contemporary science and community needs, including a clear framework that balances environmental protection and economic and employment opportunities.”
“This survey is just one of the ways we’ll be working with communities to better understand their needs and ensure future management delivers the highest and best uses of our forests. We will also be engaging Victorians through public lectures, drop-in centres, workshops and a range of other events throughout the year,” Mr Chapple said.
Significant funding has been invested into delivering greater community value from Victoria’s forests, including $35.9 million in the 2018-19 State budget.
This includes $17.6 million allocated to the modernisation of Victoria’s RFAs and forest management system, which will improve the long-term management of Victoria’s forests.
It also includes, $18.3 million to undertake forest protection surveys in areas planned for timber harvesting to improve the management and protection of threatened species.
To complete the online survey and ensure your views shape the future management of Victoria’s forests visit: https://engage.vic.gov.au/future-of-our-forests.
For more information on the RFA modernisation program, and to register your interest to receive updates on upcoming events and activities in your area, visit: https://www2.delwp.vic.gov.au/futureforests.