A forest strategy for Aotearoa New Zealand

Find out how to take part in setting the direction for New Zealand's forest system over the next 30 years and beyond.

Why a forest strategy?

Forests and trees are important to New Zealand. Healthy and sustainable forests support our:

  • economy
  • ecosystems
  • people's well-being.

And as New Zealand transitions to a low-emissions economy, the important role that forests and trees play is growing. We need an ambitious plan to help us identify the vision for forests, opportunities, and priorities for action.

The Government has increased its focus on forestry through the One Billion Trees Programme.

What the strategy will focus on

Working together, we can develop an innovative forest strategy that:

  • supports forest-related industries and activities
  • grows the role of forests and trees in improving the social, environmental and economic well-being of New Zealanders.

We want the strategy to reflect the long-term and broad aspirations for forests and trees in New Zealand, and establish a sector-wide course of action for achieving them. It'll broadly set out:

  • a common vision
  • a roadmap for getting there
  • a shared understanding of priorities
  • areas for action in the short, medium, and long term
  • clarity around the roles and responsibilities to deliver the action
  • ways in which participants can work better together.

We aim to publish the forest strategy mid-2020.

Get involved in the forest strategy

What the strategy will include

We're keeping an open view of what aspects of forestry and the forest sector the strategy will cover. It'll affect a complex sector, where there's a broad range of groups and professional organisations with different interests.

Māori are significant participants in the forest sector. We'll ensure we consider the main issues and interests of Māori as kaitiaki, landowners, Māori forestry organisations, and iwi.

To get a good overview of the forestry system in New Zealand, we are interested in understanding the broad range of forest environments, the interactions between different types of forests and trees, key sector participants and their areas of interest. The areas and interests that we'll likely include are:

  • environmental issues and climate change
  • carbon forestry and carbon markets
  • commercial plantation forestry (like pine)
  • native forests for conservation, biodiversity, restoring landscapes, timber, and other products (like honey)
  • the energy created from and by forestry (like biofuels and process heat)
  • wood processing, including timber and non-timber products
  • urban and farm forests, forests for recreation and cultural pursuits
  • the sectors that support forestry (like labour and skills, research and science, and infrastructure and logistics).

The forest strategy will acknowledge the values and benefits of all forests and forest-related activities in New Zealand, regardless of who owns them and why. However, the strategy’s specific focus is on the future of the forestry system and there are some issues it is not expected to address. These include issues that relate to:

  • trees in private gardens
  • orchards
  • protected native forests and conservation areas managed by the Department of Conservation.

Tell us what you think

Get involved

We're working with as many groups as possible to develop the strategy. We’ll be testing and refining our ideas along the way and providing updates on the website. 

We would like to know what you think. You can share your views about what a forest strategy means to you, why it matters, and what a great forest sector would look like.

2. Which elements of New Zealand’s forest system should the strategy focus on? Tick all that apply.

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