The Greens NSW are calling for the immediate review of 16 forestry wood supply agreements signed by former Labor Minister Ian Macdonald, that were known at the time to be based on grossly unsustainable yields from State forests, and that have since left NSW with degraded forests and growing legal liabilities.

Greens MP and Forestry Spokesperson David Shoebridge said:

“Between 2004 and 2007 former Primary Industries Minister Ian Macdonald was responsible for signing at least 16 wood supply agreements that opened up thousands of hectares of native forests to unsustainable logging.

“More than a dozen wood supply contracts, covering thousands of hectares of State Forests, were signed by this former Minister and questions must be answered about how they stack up, both environmentally and financially.

“The evidence of questionable dealings we have seen in ICAC over the past weeks means there must be an immediate review of every wood supply contract that bears Mr Macdonald’s signature to protect both NSW Treasury and this State’s precious native forests.

“These agreements are still in place and provide for the ongoing supply of thousands of cubic metres of timber to mills across NSW with most of the contracts continuing to run until 2020 and some as late as 2025.

“At the same time as the former minister was signing these documents, Forestry NSW was in receipt of a scathing internal report that made it clear the government had no idea of the extent of the timber resource the Minister was signing up for harvest.

“The 2004 internal government review found that a report by State Forests highlighted deficiencies in just about every aspect of the process Forests NSW used to estimate the merchantable volume of timber available for harvesting.

“Wood Supply Contracts in NSW represent notoriously bad value, promising amounts of wood that cannot be sustainably delivered, and with compensation clauses that cost taxpayers hundreds of thousands of dollars.

“The Greens NSW are calling for all NSW forestry wood supply contracts that have been signed by former Forestry Minister Ian Macdonald to be immediately reviewed by both ICAC and the NSW government,” Mr Shoebridge said.

Contracts signed by Macdonald by Region

 

North East NSW

Date signed

Company

Area of Supply

13 August 2004

Hurford’s Building Supplies Pty Ltf

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

13 November 2004

Fenning Timbers (assignor)

Allen Taylor & Co (assignee) aka BORAL.

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

2004

Kempsey Timbers Sawmilling

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

2004

Kempsey Timbers Sawmilling

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

2004

Newee Creek Sawmill Pty Ltd

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

2004

A S Nicholas & Sons Pty Ltd

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

2004

Wyong North Sawmill Pty Limited

North East NSW, Mid North Coast, Hunter.

 

South Coast NSW

Date signed

Company

Area of Supply

23 November 2004

Ajungbilly Timbers Pty Limited (assignor)

Ryan & McNulty Pty Limited (assignee)

South Coast Region Forests incl Badja, Batemans Bay inner coast and outer coastal, Narooma coastal and foothills, Nowra, Queanbeyan.

30 May 2005

Davis & Herbert Forestry Pty Ltd (assignor)

Allen Taylor and Co limited (assignee)

South Coast Region Forests incl Badja, Batemans Bay inner coast and outer coastal, Narooma coastal and foothills, Nowra, Queanbeyan.

2005

D & P Timbers Limited (assignor)

T E Davis Milling Pty Limited (assignee)

South Coast Region Forests incl Badja, Batemans Bay inner coast and outer coastal, Narooma coastal and foothills, Nowra, Queanbeyan

27 September 2007

ITS Timber Heyfield PTY (assignor)

Walkers Sawmill PTY (assignee)

Tumbarumba, Bago, Green Hills, Murraguldrie, surrounds

27 September 2007

Walkers Sawmill

Tumut sub-region

2007

Gumm Brothers Pty Ltd (assignor)

Rowe’s Timber Industries Pty Ltd (assignee)

South Coast Region Forests incl Badja, Batemans Bay foothills, inner coastal and outer coastal, Narooma coastal and foothills, Nowra, Queanbeyan.

Western Region NSW

Date signed

Company

Area of Supply

1 May 2006

 

Grants Holdings Co Pty Limited

 

Western region including Inverell, Baradine, Dubbo, Forbes, Narrandera

8 March 2006

Baradine Sawmilling Company Pty Ltd

Western region including Inverell, Baradine, Dubbo, Forbes, Narrandera

8 March 2006

 

Gunnedah Timbers Pty Limited

 

Western region including Inverell, Baradine, Dubbo, Forbes, Narrandera