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Forest NSW Annual Report 2012

A log in time 1871 ■■ 1871 — As settlement advanced throughout the State, with land cleared for cultivation, trees ringbarked for grazing and timber used for the development of the colony, the first Year forest reserves were proclaimed in NSW, with the aim of preserving the timber resources of the colony. ■■ 1875 — 22 September, Mr J A Manton was appointed a forest ranger in the Occupation of Lands Branch, the first forest ranger in NSW. ■■ 1876 — Forest Conservancy first established as part of the Occupation of Lands Branch under the Secretary for Lands. ■■ 1879 — Timber reserves reached 1.2 million hectares in NSW. ■■ 1881 — 21 April, poet Henry Kendall was appointed Inspector of Forests, supervising technical work in the field, holding the position until his death on 1 September 1882. ■■ 1882 — 1 March, Forest Conservancy was moved from the Occupation of Lands Branch to become a separate branch. Mr W F Piper was appointed chief clerk. ■■ 1887 — The Forestry Branch opened the first forestry nursery at Gosford with Mr John McCoig as the overseer. Seedling production began and experimental plantations were established. The Forestry Branch’s first experimental plantation of Pinus radiata was undertaken at the nursery, probably sometime around 1894. ■■ 1890 — A Forestry Department (rather than a Forestry Branch that had been attached to several departments since 1876, including the Department of Lands, the Occupation of Lands Branch, the Department of Mines and the Colonial Secretary), was established. Mr John Brown was appointed Director General of Forests on 1 July. The Department was amalgamated with the Department of Agriculture in 1893 to form the Department of Agriculture and Forests and later the Forestry and Agriculture Branch in 1896. ■■ 1897 — 1 October, the Forestry Branch was re-established and transferred to the Department of Lands, with Mr Richard Dalrymple Hay the Officer in Charge. ■■ 1905 — Timber reserves reached 3 million hectares in NSW. ■■ 1907 — With concerns about the impending shortage of timber, a Royal Commission of Inquiry on Forestry was established on 15 July and submitted a final report on 29 October 1908 that recommended ‘the planting of exotic softwood trees of commercial value on suitable lands throughout the State’. ■■ 1909 — 1 June, the Forestry Branch was transferred to the Department of Agriculture. ■■ 1910 — 1 January, the Department of Forestry was established by the Forestry Act 1909. The first act to deal separately with forestry in NSW, and made provision for the permanent dedication of State forests. Mr Richard Dalrymple Hay was appointed the first Director General of Forests. ■■ 1912 — The first attempt at a commercial pine plantation was made at Tuncurry State Forest (dedicated in 1916), mainly with Pinus radiata and Pinus pinasta. ■■ 1913 — The first of eight afforestation camps on State forests was established at Tuncurry on the mid-north coast. These camps were set up to accommodate prisoners to undertake forestry work, in particular the establishment of pine plantations. ■■ 1913 — 26 March, the first State forest was dedicated, Acacia Creek and Koreelah State Forest No. 1, adjacent to the NSW/QLD border near Legume. ■■ 1916 — On 1 November, the Forestry Department was abolished and the Forestry Commission of NSW was established by the Forestry Act 1916. The Commission was responsible for the management of State forests, timber reserves, flora reserves and some Crown land for ‘the best advantage of the State’. Mr Richard Dalrymple Hay was appointed the first Chief Commissioner. ■■ 1917 — Nearly 200 staff employed by the Commission. The second nursery opened at Dubbo. ■■ 1918 — The Commission had dedicated the bulk of State forests (around 2 million hectares), largely based on the old timber reserves. The Commission began to expand the planting of pines and other conifers. ■■ 1924 — The first sale of pine by the Commission was made when 55 m3 from the experimental Pinus plantation at Gosford nursery was sold to a local mill to make fruit cases. ■■ 1935 — Due to variable success of the program, the planting of pines and other conifers ceased until after World War II. ■■ 1935 — Under Commissioner Swaine, the Division of Wood Technology (later the Wood Technology and Forest Research Division in 1976) was established. This was to provide ‘assistance to the sawmilling trade and the promulgation of the wider utilisation of native timbers’. During World War II, the Division focused on testing NSW timbers for aircraft manufacture and charcoal, with staff working in shifts so testing could be maintained 24 hours a day. The Division originally operated at the Technological Museum in Harris Street and then moved to 96 (and later 98) Harrington Street, Sydney between 1937 and 1972. ■■ 1939 — Land was purchased for a forest experimentation station in West Pennant Hills in 1938 and was dedicated as Cumberland State Forest in 1939. As well as a nursery, an arboretum of Australian species was planted with walking trails built through the groves – the beginning of a policy of deliberate recreational development in the forest which led to the facilities of today. ■■ 1939 — During 1939–40, the first eucalypt plantations were established at Wallaroo State Forest (grey ironbark) near Raymond Terrace and at Whian Whian State Forest (blackbutt) near Mullumbimby. ■■ 1946 — Following the end of World War II, the pine plantation program recommenced at an ever increasing rate. ■■ 1959 — During 1959–60, a computer was first used to undertake timber resource assessments in preparing forest management plans. Statewide coverage of management plans was completed in the late 1980s. ■■ 1970 — The Forestry Commission employed around 2500 staff – 900 public servant officers (more than 200 of them being foresters) and over 1600 employees under the Forestry Act. ■■ 1971 — 85 000 hectares of pine plantation established by the Forestry Commission in NSW. ■■ 1972 — The Wood Technology and Forest Research Division relocated to new premises built at Cumberland State Forest including an extensive forestry library. ■■ 1973 — Although the recreational use of State forests had been occurring for many years, the objects of the Forestry Commission under the Forestry Act 1916 were changed to include the promotion and encouragement of recreation. ■■ 1979 — Terania Creek forest protests held against logging in rainforest. This, and subsequent protests in other forest areas, sparked the NSW Government’s decision to gazette the remaining rainforest in NSW as national park under the Forestry Revocation and National Parks Act of 1983–84. In general, the 1970s and 1980s saw public perception of forests begin to change. More than just a source of timber, State forests were also seen to contain a rich variety of plants and animals, clean water and air, and recreation sites. ■■ 1988 — More than 3.6 million hectares of State forests in NSW. ■■ 1991 — The Commission’s head office moved from York Street, Sydney to Pennant Hills. ■■ 1993 — The Commission began trading under the name State Forests of NSW as a registered business monitored by a board of governance. ■■ 1999 — NSW first Regional Forest Agreement or 20-year plan for the sustainable management and conservation of native forests was completed. ■■ 2004 — Under the new brand name of Forests NSW, the organisation was established as a public trading enterprise within NSW Department of Primary Industries. ■■ 2006 — Ecologically Sustainable Forest Management plans published. These describe how Forests NSW provide for timber supply and recreation while maintaining ecological processes and environmental values. Forests NSW achieved certification to the Australian Forestry Standard. ■■ 2007 — Forests NSW head office relocated to the corporate facility at Cumberland State Forest, West Pennant Hills. 2012 ■■ 2012 — Minister for Primary Industries, the Hon. Katrina Hodgkinson, MP, announced that Forests NSW will become a State-owned corporation. Primary source: T C Grant, History of Forestry in New South Wales 1788 to 1988, typeset and printed by Star Printery Pty Ltd, Erskineville, NSW. Forests NSW Annual Report 2011–12 Social, Environmental and Economic Performance 11


Forest NSW Annual Report 2012
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