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Tasmanian Blackwood Growers

Australian Wooden Boat Festival

Forum: The Future of Boatbuilding Wood

Sunday 12th February 2023 10.00 – 12.00pm

The Wood Supply Forum, chaired by AWBF Board member Scott Rankin, will explore achievable, pragmatic options to ensure a small sustainable supply of boatbuilding timber into the future. Without high quality boat building timber supplies, the future of the AWBF is in jeopardy. The forum will examine the beauty of Tasmania’s world class timber, projected future supplies and what boat builders are doing to obtain supplies.

There is one statement in the above paragraph that is correct. The rest is wishful thinking and a 100% guarantee that the AWBF has NO future.

At least here we have a rare example of a timber-based organisation that is even prepared to think about where their wood comes from. It may be complete delusion but at least they score a point for trying.

This forum will obviously be nothing but a soap box for pushing the continuing plunder of Tasmania’s endangered old growth forests, with all the attendant political corruption, conflict, protest and waste of taxpayers money.

The Wooden Boat Festival is setting itself up for a conflict with the community that they cannot win.

The Wooden Boat Festival will become a focus for protest and demonstration.

The future of wooden boats is in private plantations, not logging public native old growth forest at taxpayers expense.

Timbers suitable for building wooden boats can be grown in plantations. They will be different timbers, but that is the only viable future.

It will be up to the wooden boat community to organise and engage with the rural community to get these plantations established and growing.

Will the wooden boat community continue down the road to forest conflict or will it change course?

One possibility is that the Wooden Boat Festival organisers will play politics and threaten to close down the Festival unless the State government continues to allow old growth logging at taxpayers expense. That would be a typical Tasmanian political strategy. We have been there before, holding Tasmania’s forests and Tasmanian taxpayers to ransom.

I fully support the Wooden Boat Festival, but not if it comes at the expense of Tasmania’s public native forests and taxpayers.



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