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Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement

The Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement (RFA), is an inter-governmental agreement between the Tasmanian and Australian Governments, signed in November 1997. The Agreement provides for the long term sustainable management of Tasmania's forests, both public and privately owned, and applies for 20 years,  with  five-yearly reviews.

Tasmania was the first state in Australia to be fully covered by an RFA. Documents relating to the preparation and release of the RFA, including the Agreement, land use maps, media release and fact sheets, reports and assessments can be found on the Australian Government's RFA website.

Since signing the RFA, several Tasmanian Government agencies have been involved in its implementation. Whole-of-Government co-ordination is facilitated by the Department of State Growth. Other Tasmanian Government agencies involved are the Department of Primary Industries, Parks, Water and Environment,  the  Department of Premier and Cabinet, Forestry Tasmania, Private Forests Tasmania, and the Forest Practices Authority.


Extending the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement

The Australian and Tasmanian governments have committed to establish a 20 year rolling extension to the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement (RFA). To inform this process, we are seeking your feedback.

Stakeholders have had an initial opportunity to provide feedback (from 17 April to 12 June 2015) about extending the Tasmanian RFA, as part of the third five-yearly review of the RFA. This initial feedback, and the Independent Reviewer’s report to the third five‑yearly review of the Tasmanian  RFA, has informed the focus of this additional consultation.

The governments will consider any practical improvements to the Tasmanian RFA, to ensure it remains effective and credible in the long term. While the governments are not negotiating a new RFA, or changing the Agreement’s fundamental objectives, they have identified the following improvements  to the RFA framework:

  • Streamlined and strengthened review and reporting arrangements – presently the five yearly reviews examine the implementation of the RFA clause-by-clause. The improved review and reporting arrangements will be outcomes focused.  
  • Improved and contemporary dispute resolution mechanisms – these will give the governments more options for resolving issues about the implementation of the RFA.  
  • Improved communication and consultation – the governments will hold annual officials level bilateral meetings, in the interim years between five-yearly reviews, to discuss issues relating to the ongoing implementation of the RFA.  
  • Modernisation of the RFA – where practicable, the governments will update references to superseded legislation and policy.  

The Tasmanian RFA is the governments’ policy framework for delivering sustainable forest management in Tasmania. In extending the Tasmanian RFA, the governments will maintain the Agreement’s key objectives:

  • certainty of resource access and supply to Tasmania’s forestry industry  
  • ecologically sustainable forest management and use of Tasmania’s productive forests, and  
  • a Comprehensive Adequate and Representative reserve system.  

Have your say

To have your say, please complete the Questionnaire PDF, 295.15 KB,

Note: The questionnaire may not be 'fillable' in all browsers or readers. If you have any issues with the form, save it and complete offline.

and

Hand in while visiting a drop-in centre

  • Monday 5 December 2016, 4.00–7.30pm at Peach & Plum Rooms – Huon LINC, 1 Skinner Drive, Huonville  
  • Wednesday 7 December 2016, 4.00–7.30pm at Wellers Inn, 36 Queen Street, Burnie  
  • Thursday 8 December 2016, 4.00–7.30pm at The LINC, 51 King Street, Scottsdale  

or

Email your completed response to: reviewrfa@stategrowth.tas.gov.au

Consultation closes 12.30pm AEDT, Friday, 23 December 2016. Questionnaires received after this time may not be accepted.

Privacy Notice

You are providing personal information to the Tasmanian Department of State Growth (the Department), which will manage that information in accordance with the Personal Information Protection Act 2004.

The personal information collected here will be used by the Department for the purpose of receiving and verifying contact details for stakeholders who have chosen to submit a completed questionnaire on the extension to the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement. Failure to provide this information may  result in the non-acceptance of your questionnaire or records not being properly maintained. The Department may also use the information for related purposes, or disclose it to third parties, including the Australian Government Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, in circumstances allowed for  by law. You have the right to access your personal information by request to the Department and you may be charged a fee for this service.

Copyright in completed questionnaires resides with the author(s), not with the Department.

In providing a completed questionnaire, you agree that:

  • unless you indicate otherwise below (or as otherwise determined by the Department), your questionnaire will be published on the Department’s website and will remain on the Department’s website indefinitely.  
  • the Department can contact you about your questionnaire.  
  • for published questionnaires from individuals, your name will be published with your questionnaire. All other contact details will be removed from your questionnaire.  
  • for published questionnaires from organisations, your name and your organisation’s details will be published with your questionnaire.

RFA Third Five-Yearly Review & Extension Process

The Tasmanian Government together with the Australian Government invited public comments on the implementation of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement (RFA) for the reporting period 2007 to 2012, as part of the third five-yearly review. Five-yearly reviews are required under clause 45 of the RFA.  The  Tasmanian  RFA third five-yearly review commenced with the signing of the Scoping Agreement by the Hon. Paul Harriss MP and Senator the Hon. Richard Colbeck. The Scoping Agreement sets out the arrangements agreed by the governments for undertaking the review.

The following documents were jointly prepared by the Tasmanian and Australian Governments as an input to the review process.

The Summary Document provided information about the Tasmanian RFA, review process and a summary of the government's progress in implementing the RFA. The Implementation Report provided a more in-depth analysis and commentary of the actions, recommendations and the progress in implementing the RFA. The  documentation  is  a compendium of the original RFA, Tasmanian Community Forest Agreement (TCFA) and the first and second five-yearly reviews of the RFA and the TCFA.

An independent reviewer, Dr Glen Kile, was appointed to undertake the review.  Dr Kile has analysed the Implementation Report, stakeholder comments and other relevant information and has finalised his report. The report has been forwarded to the Tasmanian and Australian Governments and tabled  in  the  Australian Parliament.  The report contains a number of recommendations which will be considered by both governments and will provide input into the negotiations for the extension of the RFA.

The report is available from the Australian Government Department of Agriculture:

Members of the public were invited to provide their comments on the implementation of the Tasmanian RFA for the third five-yearly reporting period in mid-2015.

The representation period for submissions has now closed.

26 submissions were received for web publication in the representation period. These submissions can be viewed via the link below:

Third Five-Yearly RFA Review submissions

The report of the Independent Reviewer, Dr Glen Kile, has now been completed  and submitted to the Australian and Tasmanian Governments. The report has been tabled in both houses of the Australian Parliament. The report can be accessed via the link below;

TRFA Review PDF, 1186.87 KB

Joint Government Response to Third Five-Yearly Review

The Tasmanian and Australian Governments have jointly prepared a response to the recommendations contained in the report by the independent reviewer, Dr Glen Kile, on the third five-yearly review.  The response can be accessed via the link below:

Joint Government Response

Any queries relating to the review can be made by phoning the Department of State Growth on (03) 6166 3499 during business hours.

Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement extension process

Clause 8 of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement (Tasmanian RFA) requires the Australian Government and the Tasmanian Government (the Parties) to agree a process for extending the Tasmanian RFA as part of the third five-yearly review.

This document shows the process the Parties are using to negotiate an extended Tasmanian RFA and the relationship between this extension process and the third five-yearly review of the Tasmanian RFA.

Formal negotiations will conclude with the Prime Minister and Tasmanian Premier signing and announcing the extended Tasmanian RFA.


Amendments to the Regional Forest Agreement

On 19 July 2001, both Parties agreed to minor variations to the RFA, to ensure that compensation and termination provisions were consistent with RFAs in other states, and to address minor issues such as a change in mailing address of the Commonwealth and the clarification of an ambiguity of public reserves  as  informal  reserves.


RFA 10 Year Review

The second five-yearly review of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement 1997 covering the period 2002-07 was completed in February 2008. Both governments have agreed to implement all of the recommendations from the review. The parties to the Tasmanian RFA have released their detailed responses to the  recommendations arising from the second five-yearly review.

The Joint Government Response to the second five-yearly review of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement can also be viewed on the website of the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries website.

The purpose of the review was to review performance against the specified milestones and commitments of the Regional Forest Agreement 1997 and the Tasmanian Community Forest Agreement 2005. The RFA 10 Year Review (2007) Scoping Agreement set out the agreed arrangements for the review.

The review was undertaken by Mr John Ramsay, an independent person jointly appointed by Ministers from both governments.

The governments prepared two reports for the purposes of the RFA 10 Year Review. The Sustainability Indicators Report 2007 and a report on the Implementation of the Regional Forest Agreement 2007. Public comment on these reports was considered by the Reviewer in preparing his report to the governments.


TCFA Intensive Forest Management Program Audit

In response to a recommendation from the 10 Year Review, the Tasmanian Government commissioned independent financial and performance audits of the $115 million intensive forest management program funded by both governments under the Tasmanian Community Forest Agreement from 2005 to 2010.

Audit Reports

Forestry Tasmania's response to the recommendations

RFA Policy Framework

The following document was prepared in 2002 to describe the statewide policy framework.