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Managing forests

The NSW Government manages softwood and hardwood plantations and native forests for multiple uses – this includes selling forest products like timber to industry to process and take to market.

NSW forests are made up of public and privately owned plantation and natural forests that are managed for economic (wood and forest products), social (jobs and recreation) and environmental benefits (carbon, biodiversity and soil and water conservation), and cultural heritage values.

For over a century, timber harvesting has occurred in NSW creating regional jobs and ensuring a supply of timber from  sustainably managed sources. Find out more about the forestry industry.

Roles and responsibilities

Three government agencies share responsibility for the management of native forestry operations in NSW.

NSW Department of Industry

  • Lands - leads forest policy and research and industry development providing evidence based information to forest managers and policy makers that underpins the sustainable use of forests
  • Primary Industries, Fisheries - regulates forestry operations under the Fisheries Management Act 1994
  • Industry and Primary Industry websites

Forestry Corporation of NSW

  • the land manager of State forests and the only organisation authorised to remove timber from State forests and other Crown-timber lands
  • leads the operational management of around two million hectares of native forests for sustainable timber production, recreation and biodiversity
  • also manages around 200,000 hectares of softwood plantations and 35,000 hectares of eucalypt plantations
  • Forestry Corporation of NSW website

Environment Protection Authority (EPA)

  • responsible for the regulation of native forestry operations on private and public land in NSW
  • EPA website

NSW Forestry Industry Roadmap

The NSW Department of Industry, Forestry Corporation of NSW and the EPA are responsible for delivering the NSW Forestry Industry Roadmap released mid-2016. The roadmap is a strategic action plan to build a stronger, more competitive and ecologically sustainable forestry industry. It represents a clear statement from the NSW Government that it supports the NSW forestry industry, which is critical for many towns in regional NSW and the construction of new homes in Sydney.

Find out more about the NSW Forestry Industry Roadmap.