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Forestry

Scientific support for the establishment, management and sustainable use of forests
Man measuring tree

The Forestry program contributes to economic development and natural resource conservation and rehabilitation through scientific support for the establishment, management and sustainable use of forests, providing optimum social, economic and environmental benefits to partner countries and Australia.

The ACIAR forestry program focuses on aspects of forestry value chains that have good economic potential, and where the benefits will have early benefits for communities and smallholder livelihoods. Specifically, the forestry program aims to:

  • Enhance the role of tree growing and forest management in improving subsistence lifestyles, smallholder and community livelihoods and sustainable land management
  • Enhance the contribution of legal, sustainable and value-adding forest industries to economic development in partner countries, and
  • Contribute to the Australian Government's development assistance and international forest-policy priorities, combating illegal logging and reducing deforestation.

Areas of focus include development of silvicultural systems and improved germplasm, harvesting and processing approaches, and the management of threats.

Forests are disappearing worldwide, particularly in the developing world.  1.6 billion people rely on forests, for social and economic needs, and for environmental benefits.  Demand for forest products is rising, and, if not managed appropriately, will result in further deforestation and unsustainable practices.  Forests provide many environmental services, including sequestering carbon and maintaining water quality and biodiversity.

The challenge is to enhance the role of trees in agricultural landscapes, achieve sustainable forest management, and develop value-adding industries to enhance environmental, social and economic values from forestry.  Forest industries provide employment from planting, managing, and harvesting through to processing forest products.

Forestry can help developing countries achieve their Millennium Development Goals and could enhance livelihoods for smallholder farmers and their communities, by growing trees, improving forest management, and developing value-adding industries.

Research Program Manager: Tony Bartlett