Accelerated Adoption of Wood Processing Innovation Program
On 14 April 2022, the Prime Minister announced that the Australian Government will be providing $112.9 million over four years from 2022-23, to co-invest with wood processors to adopt new and upgraded wood processing facilities.
Grants will be available to wood processors to upgrade or adopt innovative technology that will improve domestic wood processing efficiency and capacity – producing higher value products and to utilise more from our wood resources.
The program will offer co-funding of up to 40% of total project costs, with the remaining 60% to be met by the applicant.
Further information on the Accelerated Adoption of Wood Processing Innovation Program will be available through the Community Grants Hub in the near future.
To support the establishment of new plantations, in partnership with state and territory governments and industry, the Australian Government is providing $86.2 million over five years from 2021-22 as part of this year’s Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook (MYEFO).
The program will offer matched grants (50/50) to foresters to fund the establishment costs of new plantations, in participating states and territories.
The Australian Government will fund 40% of the government contribution to the grants program in each state or territory, and the participating state or territory will be expected to fund 60% of the government contribution.
Following the negotiation of appropriate arrangements with participating states and territories, the Australian Government expects the funding to be available in the 2022-23 financial year.
This year’s MYEFO also includes $26.2 million in funding measures to support and bolster research, innovation and resilience in Australia’s forest and wood products industries. This includes:
- $3.1 million over two years to extend the regional National Institute for Forest Products Innovation (NIFPI) Centres in Launceston, Mount Gambier and Gippsland;
- $900,000 over two years to deliver a series of studies to assess Australia’s exposure to illegally logged timber,
- $7.1 million over four years and then $2.3 million ongoing to match forest growers increased research and development levies, and
- the $15.1 million Construction Softwood Transport Assistance Program already announced and being implemented.
Australia has 134 million hectares of forest, covering 17% of Australia's land area. Australia has around 3% of the world's forests, and globally is the country with the seventh largest forest area.
Australia’s forests are diverse, extensive, and highly regarded for their ecological, economic and social values. They provide a range of benefits including wood and non-wood forest products and ecosystem services. The range of services covers:
- water protection and supply
- soil protection
- carbon storage and sequestration
- habitat for flora and fauna species
- tourism and recreation
- cultural values for both non-Indigenous and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples.
Australia has a well-established institutional framework to support the conservation and sustainable management of forests.
The Australian Government aims to foster and enable productive, profitable, internationally competitive and sustainable Australian forest and forest products industries.
National Forest Industries Plan - Growing a Better Australia – A Billion Trees for Jobs and Growth.
The Australian Government’s National Forest Industries Plan, Growing a Better Australia – A Billion Trees for Jobs and Growth, was launched on 12 September 2018.
The plan provides a vision supporting the forest industries' aspirational goal of planting a billion new plantation trees over the period to 2030 to meet growing demand for wood and wood products.
Progress with the implementation of the plan and related measures is reported in the National Forest Industries Plan—implementation, election commitments and other measures.
The Australian Government provided $20 million over 4 years in the 2018–2019 Federal Budget to support implementation of the plan. Subsequent initiatives have built on this base and responded to emerging priorities, including assisting industry with bushfire recovery measures.
National University Wood Challenge
The Australian Government has provided funding to Forest and Wood Products Australia (FWPA) to deliver a National University Wood Challenge.
The challenge is supporting teams of university students and academics to create and develop innovative ideas for using wood to produce new, sustainable, everyday products. Funding is being provided to build, test or prototype ideas.
For more information, go to FWPA-National University Wood Challenge.