The demand for forestry land for both tree crop and Carbon farming continues unabated despite significant fluctuations in the export log prices occurring from February this year as a result of COVID 19.
The value of carbon has punched through the $35 per tonne as the government's plans for the first auction of carbon are set down for 17 March 2021. There will be an auction reserve floor price of $20, with further volume able to be released under a cost containment measure that has a trigger price of $50.
The value of pre-1990 forest land appears to have stabilised after some significant gains over the last three years. Previously forested post-1989 land is aligning more with pre-1990 forestland as the carbon benefits have mainly been exhausted under this land type.
Vacant farmland for afforestation is in demand with significant increases in value driven by the carbon value currently being achieved.
The National Environmental Standards (NES) - for Plantation Forestry has bedded in resulting in production forestry being withdrawn from some of the more unstable marginal land, with establishment of manuka or assisted reversion to indigenous cover. This is also occurring in areas of high public use adjoining residential areas where harvesting of exotic crops in the future could result in higher risks of damage to property if a weather event was to occur shortly after harvest.