The COVID-19 pandemic has created a housing construction boom in Australia. As a result, demand for Australian timber has soared. Much of the timber needed to meet that the growing housing demand came from sawlogs that were burnt during the summer bushfires of 2019–2020. However, after 16-months, the difficult task of harvesting those burnt sawlogs has come to an end. This week, the last truck load carrying salvaged, burnt logs entered the Hyne Mill at Tumbarumba, while AKD Softwoods will finish its salvage soon. Visy has also been processing the smaller salvaged logs. Regrettably, over 50% of the trees in the regions impacted by the wildfires were too young to save. The salvage operation focused primarily on getting all of the trees that were 19-years or older and then refocused on as many of the trees that were at least 12 years or older, resulting in the harvest running 80% above normal. In total, approximately around 2.7 million tons of timber has been salvaged in the Tumut/Tumbarumba region, with a great team effort from Hyne, AKD Softwoods and Visy. Chief Executive Officer of the Australian Forest Products Association (AFPA), Ross Hampton said this incredible feat demonstrates the commitment and drive of our industries to get the job done, no matter the setbacks. “Our forest industries should be commended for getting the maximum timber supply and regional economic benefit from the blackened timber. It has proven critical to the housing construction market, with soaring timber demand nationwide off the back of the Government’s HomeBuilder stimulus.” Mr. Hampton concluded, “To still be salvaging timber 16 months after the devastating bushfires exceeded industry expectations. The way the industry supply chain has come together to meet the challenge has been magnificent.”
FEA compiles the Wood Markets News from various 3rd party sources to provide readers with the latest news impacting forest product markets. Opinions or views expressed in these articles do not necessarily represent those of FEA.
Sixteen months on from bushfires, forest industries’ mission to use as much burnt timber as possible for home construction is coming