Australia's first comprehensive analysis of Tasmania's entire forest carbon storage capacity, launched today by Tasmanian Greens Minister for Climate Change Cassy O'Connor, shows that our forests are worth more standing up than logged.
The new research shows that as a baseline, Tasmania's forests could hold between 3 and 4.4 billion tonnes of C02 equivalent, and reducing the timber harvesting rates would significantly increase the rate of carbon sequestration.
"For years now the Greens have argued that the forests are worth more standing than they are being sold through a loss on global markets." Senator Christine Milne said.
"The value of our forests for marking our biodiversity and as carbon storage cannot be underestimated.
"The figure of $280 million is at best an approximation of the value of the forests because no one can anticipate now how quickly and strongly the carbon price will rise in coming years as the world increases its level of ambition in addressing global warming. As yet Australia has not committed to article 3.4 on forest management under the Kyoto Protocol, but it is likely this will occur in coming years.
"Protecting Tasmania's forests is not only good for the environment, it will be of increasing value in years to come.