Oil palms are originally from Western Africa, but can flourish wherever heat and rainfall are abundant.
Displacement of indigenous peoples, deforestation and loss of biodiversity are all consequences of our palm oil consumption. How could it come to this? Danger of deforestation what can we do in everyday life to protect people and nature?
Its low world market price and properties that lend themselves to processed foods have led the food industry to use it in half of all supermarket products. Palm oil can be found in frozen pizzas, biscuits and margarine, as well as body creams, soaps, makeup, candles and detergents.
Few people realize that almost half of the palm oil imported into the EU is used as biofuel. Sincethe mandatory blending of biofuels into motor vehicle fuels has been a major cause of deforestation.
The impact — suffering and death in producer countries, climate havoc The warm, humid climate of the tropics offers perfect growth conditions for oil palms. Day after day, huge tracts of rainforest in Southeast Asia, Latin America and Africa are being bulldozed or torched to make room for more plantations, releasing vast amounts of carbon into the atmosphere.
With their CO2 and methane emissions, palm oil-based biofuels actually have three times the climate impact of traditional fossil fuels. Palm oil is not only bad for the climate: As their forest habitat is cleared, endangered species such as the orangutan, Borneo elephant and Sumatran tiger are being pushed closer to extinction.
Smallholders and indigenous people who have inhabited and protected the forest for generations are often brutally driven from their land. In Indonesia, more than land conflicts are related to the palm oil industry.
As consumers, we are largely unaware of these broader issues, yet our daily palm oil consumption also impacts our health: Every new plantation on Borneo is destroying a further piece of their habitat.
Stepping up the pressure on policymakers is a must if we want to save our tree-dwelling kin. Apart from that, however, there is still a lot we can do in day-to-day life. Follow these simple tips to recognize, avoid and combat palm oil: Enjoy a home-cooked meal: Or pizza with potato and rosemary?
A meal cooked from fresh ingredients beats processed foods containing palm oil every time. Oils such as sunflower, olive, rapeseed or flaxseed are ideal for cooking and baking.
As of Decemberlabeling regulations in the EU require food products to clearly indicate that they contain palm oil. However, in the case of non-food items such as cosmetics and cleaning products, a wide range of chemical names may still be used to hide the use of palm oil.
A quick check of your favorite search engine will turn up palm oil-free alternatives, however.
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Remember that the customer is king: Ask your retailers for palm oil-free products. Companies can be quite sensitive to issues that give their products a bad name, so inquiring with sales staff and contacting manufacturers can make a real difference. Public pressure and increased awareness of the problem have already prompted some producers to stop using palm oil.
Sign petitions and write your elected representatives: Online campaigns put pressure on policymakers responsible for biofuels and palm oil imports. Protest marches and creative action on the street raise public and media awareness of the issue, which in turn steps up the pressure on policymakers.The gray whale’s range formerly included the coasts of both the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.
The Atlantic population had been hunted to extinction by the s and in the early s it seemed that the two Pacific populations (eastern and western) would follow. This dramatic decrease is due to deforestation, the process of clearing forests for agriculture, urban development and other purposes.
While deforestation has paved the way for many positive uses of land, it carries many dangers to the environment and humans as well. Habitat Loss. Deforestation means large scale cutting of forests.
The forest lands are converted in to farms, ranches and urban areas through deforestation. Another cause behind deforestation is . While a plate piled high with hairy, palm-sized tarantulas is the stuff of nightmares for some, these garlic fried spiders are a coveted treat in Cambodia, where the only fear is that they may.
The Energy Racket. By Wade Frazier. Revised in June Introduction and Summary. A Brief Prehistory of Energy and Life on Earth. Early Civilization, Energy and the Zero-Sum Game. Deforestation in the neighboring Gran Chaco, which is the largest dry forest in South America, is mainly due to conversion of forest land to cropland and pasture.
Borneo Projections for for the “Heart of Borneo”—home to most of the country’s forest—show only 33 percent of the lowland rainforest remaining.