Congratulations to Rotorua District Council for Putting Wood First

With Rotorua as the centre of New Zealand's largest area of commercial forest and the high number of forestry businesses and forestry employment in the region, it seems entirely fitting that the Rotorua District Council (RDC) becomes the first local authority to adopt a Wood First policy. The policy is acknowledgement of the importance of the forestry and wood processing industries to the district, regional and national economies. It also supports the concept of developing Rotorua as a Centre of Excellence for the sector and stimulating new investment in innovative wood processing.

RDC's initiative also complements a proposal by the New Zealand Wood Council encouraging central government to adopt a similar policy at a national level.

Forestry and wood processing accounts for approximately 15 per cent of Rotorua's GDP, with around 11 million cubic metres of logs harvested each year from around Rotorua, four million of which was exported in raw log form, mostly to China. The remaining seven million cubic metres of timber was processed into higher value products.

Mayor Steve Chadwick said a Wood First policy would support the council's and community's recently adopted Rotorua 2030 vision and goals. The unanimous committee decision was to develop a Wood First policy for adoption by the council and to prepare a plan for implementation of the policy.

Wine ceiling
Wood offers opportunities for exciting, contemporary aesthetic design, along with great environmental credentials and affordability. Wood First policies are a great way to kick-start greater demand for this awesome, sustainable material.