The Central West Forestry Hub made the strategic decision to develop resources using skilled consultants where appropriate. Initially the Hub engaged The Fifth Estate to perform a stakeholder consultation process to set Hub priorities. From that survey the following project areas were developed Resources, Infrastructure, People, Community and Social, and Environmental. Below are the delivered and active projects with brief descriptions.
To promote the expansion of the Forestry industry in Central West NSW, more information is needed regarding the current plantation estate’s size and productivity. The capacity to expand the estate will rely on access to additional suitable land that is capable of supporting plantation forestry. In order to achieve this the first actions under the work plan were focused on the existing resources, methods to improve productivity, areas for potential expansion and the provision of meaningful information to landowners.
A major contributor to the longevity and efficiency of the forest industry in Central West NSW is the availability of appropriate infrastructure to ensure a secure resource and safe, low-cost logistics. The risk of large fire events is expected to increasingly impact on plantation forestry and the Central West may need to adopt additional practices or equipment in order to remain adequately prepared.
A unique advantage of Oberon is that is has existing rail infrastructure that could potentially be utilised by industry to expand the range and which raw materials can be sourced and deliver low cost freight options for manufactured timber products to their major markets.
While technologically sophisticated, the forestry industry understands that employees, landowners, end users and the broader community are core to its business. Understanding the value and the opportunities that the industry brings to the region for people is a priority of the Central West Hub.