Licence to Operate - KPIs

IO6 – Ensure the forest industry’s licence to operate (and reputation) through workers’ safety and capabilities, verifiable environmental performance, product traceability and modern standards; and, by anticipating long-term change

Impact KPI-10: Sustain the New Zealand forest and wood product industry licence to operate

This is an underpinning group of activities with broad impact across the forestry and forest products (and related) sectors. By 2019, Scion has supported the industry to enhance its licence to operate.

Leading indicator
By 2015, Scion and the forestry industry will have identified those specific activities where Scion can assist the industry in meeting its targets for improving worker safety.
A human factors scientist was recruited to expand Scion’s research capability in human performance and systems safety across the forestry value chain. This capability has facilitated engagement with forestry stakeholders across New Zealand and alignment with the latest research in human factors, safety and performance across numerous industries. Development of safe work methods in motor-manual tree felling progressed, along with several other strategic initiatives, to help solve identified safety issues within the forest industry.
By 2016, Scion with its research and industry partners, defined a strategy to reduce the use of phytosanitary treatments, specifically methyl bromide, by at least 30 per cent, and this will be presented to the Ministry for Primary Industries for evaluation and subsequent adoption by industry.
A prototype landscape model of forest insect abundance was developed and presented to STIMBR and MPI. The model will support the case for a potential future phytosanitary treatment free winter period. A national network of forest insect traps collected insect population numbers within the forests and at key export ports over 2.5 years. A new online data visualisation tool now makes data available in a secure format to stakeholders. Data from this network led to a provisional extension of the post fumigant exposure period at Northport to 21 days in winter, bringing consistency to post fumigation log handling procedures throughout New Zealand.
By 2016, the benefits and risks of genetic modification research will have been quantified and presented to the forest industry, government and other key stakeholders for an informed decision on its future.Input was made into the growing biotechnology debate occurring in New Zealand around the potential benefits of biotechnology and current road-blocks in the regulatory framework on biotechnology. This is occurring through interactions with schools, the public, government, regional councils and industry. Examples include interactions with NZFOA, CHH, NZBio workshop on GM technologies and contributions to regional council submissions.
By 2016, Scion will have (i) supported forest industries to maintain access to cost effective herbicides and management options for the environmental certification of New Zealand forests, and (ii) agreed with stakeholders’ research priorities for reducing wilding conifer impacts.
Two papers describing the environmental fate of terbuthylazine and hexazinone in a planted forest environment were published in 2015. They indicated little to no impact to soil and water quality in Pumice soil. This work was key to supporting continued use of terbuthylazine and hexazinone on FSC certified land and possibly supported their removal from the list of FSC prohibited herbicides. Results were used in development of best operational practice standards for use of terbuthylazine and hexazinone in the Auckland Council drinking water supply catchments.
On-going - support the New Zealand export industry by developing new options for products such as packaging to enhance acceptance of New Zealand products in international markets.
Staff participated in workshops and EU programmes on developing standards for bioproducts. This included Open-Bio and KBBPPS (Knowledge Based Bio-based Products’ Pre-Standardisation) workshops and meetings. Open-Bio is the follow-up project to an EU-wide research project called KBBPPS.