Sustainable timber harvesting
Harvesting timber for the purposes of PNF requires approval through a private native forestry plan (PNF Plan), ensuring that ecologically sustainable forest management is implemented and measures are put in place to mitigate impacts on plants, animals, soil and water.
Private native forestry plans
A PNF Plan is an approval under the Local Land Services Act 2013 to carry out private native forestry operations in accordance with the minimum operating standards set out in the relevant PNF Code of Practice (PNF Code).
A PNF Plan holder is a landholder with an approved PNF plan. PNF Codes of Practice require landholders to complete a forest operation plan, which describes the proposed forestry operations, before commencing PNF operations. Anyone carrying out forestry activities must comply with the PNF Plan, the relevant PNF Code and the forest operation plan.
For more information on PNF Plans, PNF Codes and forest operation plans, see the Local Land Services website.
Local Land Services and private native forestry
Local Land Services (LLS) assumed responsibility for approval of PNF activities on 30 April 2018. Local Land Services provides land planning and forestry advice to landholders and administers the approval process for PNF Plans.
See Local Land Services for more information on PNF approval and advice services.
The EPA and private native forestry
A machine loader harvests timber as part of a private native forestry operation on the Mid North Coast NSW. Credit: John Forcier/EPA
The EPA is responsible for PNF monitoring and compliance. We ensure that PNF operations follow approved PNF Plans and the relevant PNF Code of Practice, which are designed to ensure PNF activity remains sustainable and its impact on other plants and animals is minimised. We ensure compliance by using a variety of methods that may include analysis of data such as satellite imagery and remote sensing tools, timber mill records and field visits.
PNF Plan holders’ responsibilities
PNF Plan holders are required to report if they:
- have carried out PNF operations in the previous calendar year, or
- have carried out PNF operations in the current calendar year, or
- are planning to commence PNF operations in the next 12 months.
These reports are due at the end of March each year. Use the Annual report form to complete and submit them. Submissions are sent automatically to the EPA and LLS.
A report is not necessary if:
- harvesting operations haven’t been carried out in the previous year and
- will not be undertaken in the coming year.
See the Reporting Clause in the PNF Code for more information.
PNF Plans approved after August 2017: landholders are required to notify the EPA or Local Land Services each time forestry operations start and stop. This notification requirement is in addition to the reporting obligations.
PNF Plans approved before August 2017: landholders are encouraged to notify, even if this requirement does not apply to them.
We are required to inspect PNF activities from time to time; inspections are required by the PNF Plan approval and the Local Land Services Act 2013. We will contact you toorganise a suitable time and day. Plan holders do not need to be present during inspections.