The Forest Industries Research Centre (FIRC) is focused on issues as they relate to the forestry value chain, thus the economic and environmental sustainability of forest industries.
The forestry value chain covers a wide range of research disciplines including genetics and genomics, silviculture and stand management, forest health and pest management, ecology and biodiversity management, timber and biomass harvest and haulage, fibre quality and value, timber processing and biorefinery, renewable energy and biofuels as well as timber construction materials.
While these research areas are all important in their own right, from the perspective of the FIRC, they all interact with each other in real ways to have important impacts and we believe a multidiscipline approach is the best to understand and identify value in these interactions.
The aim of FIRC to conduct world class research with collaborating industry, national and international partners to:
- improve the understanding of increasingly complex forestry value chains
- expand the knowledge of how the links of the value chain interact and how they can be managed to add value
- develop a clearer understanding of its place and impact within the broader forest value network which encompasses all the values of a forest
- optimised forest supply chain planning and management
- biomass/bioenergy supply chain systems and management
- subtropical forest and plantation management systems
- forest industry pest and disease management incl. biological control systems
- tropical and subtropical plantation species selection and breeding
- plantation and regrowth timber processing for engineered wood products
Professor Mark Brown is a regular contributor to The Conversation, which is an independent source of news and views, sourced from the academic and research community and delivered direct to the public.
Working with the alliance participants Australian Forest Operations Research Alliance (AFORA) has, and continues to develop, practical tools and industry reports. These include:
Forests for the future research seminar series
Each month researchers from FIRC and TFAP will present their current research being conducted in partnership with industry and communities around Australia and across the globe.
News via USC
USC leads bushfire risk trial in national research project
Researchers from the University of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland are leading one of three major trials across Australia aimed at reducing the risk of bushfire damage to our built and natural environments.
International interns chip in for bioenergy research
Research students from Canada and France have arrived at USC to assist forestry researchers turn logging by-products into renewable energy.
South African researcher joins USC battle to beat gum tree pest
A South African entomologist has arrived at USC to work with forestry researchers in combatting a tiny pest that is devastating eucalyptus trees around the world.
Harvard Professor to speak about forest ecology
An ecology expert from Harvard University will give a special public lecture about the future of forests on Monday 14 March at the University of the Sunshine Coast.
USC scientist tackles rogue ladybirds and tree-killing wasps
USC researcher and entomologist Dr Helen Nahrung studies insects of all shapes & sizes, including rogue ladybirds in Tasmania and a potential major threat to Sunshine Coast pine forests — the sirex woodwasp.