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Wood Matters

Clarky's Comment - March 2013, Opening Export Markets

If the popular media was your only source of information as to the importance of opening up export markets for New Zealand goods and services then you could be forgiven for thinking that such efforts had no impact on the living standards of ordinary New Zealanders, or were even damaging.

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Log Market - March 2013

The big dry continues over much of New Zealand. Unlike our farming cousins there is minimal impact from the lack of water on established forests, other than increased fire prevention vigilance.

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Forestry and the Emissions Trading Scheme

In February NZUs broke through $2, and got as low as $1.50 and are currently trading around $1.70. This sudden drop from $2.40 in a matter of days appears to be due to a large volume being dumped on the market.

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Better use of new technology for operational efficiency

Finding more efficient ways of getting work done is absolutely critical in the forestry business. Most forestry companies realise that every bit of time freed up from manual, cumbersome or duplicated processes means better results, more staff capacity and better profitability.

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Critical Stage in Forestry Research

Three big Government funding contracts totalling $5.8M come to an end on 30 September of this year. These contracts, supported by $1.0M of funding from Future Forest Research (FFR) membership fees, have supported the FFR programmes in Radiata Management, Diverse Species and Environment since the formation of FFR in 2007.

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Rare and Threatened Species Sightings

There is a common misunderstanding widely held in New Zealand that our plantations are poor suppliers of habitat for our native biodiversity. While it is true that a plantation will never be able to replace a well developed native forest in terms of its total provision of habitat for native species, it is well established in science that New Zealand's plantations can and do provide important habitat for native biodiversity.

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Log Market - February 2013

Hot dry weather is generally positive for forest harvesting activity (apart from the fire danger or fire incidents restricting activity). Fortunately, fire activity has been relatively subdued in New Zealand as it was spared the widespread destruction from fires in Australia.

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Workplace Safety critically important in 2013

With the publication of the Pike River enquiry late in 2012, and the government clearly very serious about implementing the recommendations from that, and reporting back of the Independent Taskforce on Workplace Safety due by the end of April we can anticipate a lot of Board of Directors and senior management focus on workplace safety throughout 2013.

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A bit more forest area but less pruning

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) recently released the 2012 annual National Exotic Forest Description (NEFD) report. This report describes the area and compostion of New Zealand's planted production forests.

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Spectacular growth from Eucalypts

The potential reward of growing eucalypts in New Zealand has captivated a great number of foresters and farm foresters alike. The allure of very rapid growth, high quality fibre, attractive & durable timber along with pleasing aesthetics are just some of the many reasons for planting eucalypts.

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Introduction

This is the last edition of Wood Matters for the year. Many of the articles this month have a reflective tone, which often happens at this time of the year.

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