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A review of the Sustainable Forest Management framework in Victoria, Australia: an innovative example of sub-national forest policy

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The State of Victoria, Australia has approximately 8.3 million hectares of forest, of which 7.1 million hectares of native eucalypt forest lies in the public jurisdiction. This paper describes recent sub-national policy developments in Victoria, where the State Government has adopted an innovative Sustainable Forest Management monitoring and reporting framework through a combination of legislative and policy processes. This has resulted in three inter-dependant policy tools designed specifically to define and demonstrate progress towards sustainable forest management in Victoria, as follows: 1) the Sustainability Charter for Victoria's State forests; 2) Criteria and Indicators for Sustainable Forest Management in Victoria; and 3) Victoria's State of the Forests Report. The Victorian approach combines the government's desire for overarching and strategic policy statements with the need for structured monitoring and greater performance evaluation and transparency. We commend this approach as a successful example of government integrating international sustainable forest management principles into a subnational political and legal framework.
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Keywords: Montreal Process; legislation; local management; regulation; sustainable development

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: School of Forest and Ecosystem Science, Faculty of Land and Food Resources, The University of Melbourne, Australia; Department Sustainability and Environment, State Government of Victoria, Australia. 2: Department Sustainability and Environment, State Government of Victoria, Australia.

Publication date: December 1, 2007

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