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Our landscape-scale study was based on an area analysis of all age-classes of mountain ash forest that burnt in the 2009 Kilmore and Murrindindi fires. Our study demonstrated conclusively that the Kilmore and Murrindindi fires burnt through forests irrespective of their tenure. It mattered not if the forest was managed for timber harvesting or national park or any other value – all of these areas burnt with the exception of some young post-harvesting regrowth. It is equally obvious that the recent fires in 2019-20 burnt through hundreds of thousands of hectares of national parks, distant and remote from timber harvesting areas.
The association touts wood pellets — manufactured from sawdust, slash piles and low-grade timber from forestry harvest sites — as a way to fight climate change by replacing coal as an energy source.
The UK Government’s commitment to achieving net zero emissions by 2050 legislates the need for business and industry to consider their impact on the environment. The carbon sequestration capability of forestry has encouraged investors to look at forestry as an offsetting mechanism. There is an increasing recognition and expectation on forestry to assist in combatting climate change as well as providing important public services such as green spaces for recreation.
It’s not just the local municipality that is investing in street trees. Increasing numbers of residents take the time to plant up the ground around tree trunks outside their homes. The tree pits close to the corner of Culford Road and Englefield Road, for example, have the feel of a wild meadow, while others in the area boast prim displays of bedding plants or herbs. Across the area, young street trees bear signs beseeching residents to use their old bath water to keep them watered. “It’s important that people learn to love their trees and take ownership of them,” says Burke.