>When is a forest NOT a forest?


>Why when it’s an oil palm plantation of course!


Redefining what a forest is because of greed – Oops, sorry, because of Bio-Fuels.

The Jakarta Post reported recently on Indonesian forest ministry efforts to redefine oil palm plantations as forests in order to claim eligibility for carbon credits or funding under the mechanism to Reduce Emissions from Deforestation and forest Degradation (REDD). Days earlier a leaked European Commission paper on its “biofuels and bioliquids sustainability scheme” detailed how “a change from forest to oil palm plantation would not per se constitute a breach of the criterion” for sustainability, thus green-lighting conversion of forests for biofuel production.

Now who was it that said you could always follow the dollar?

Redefining plantations as forests will create perverse incentives that actually finance deforestation by oil palm plantation companies. This is clearly contrary to current global efforts to protect forests by providing funds to assist countries and companies in reducing the degradation and destruction of forests and peatlands responsible for more than 15 percent of global emissions.

Civil society organizations in the EU and Indonesia have spoken out against these measures, with representatives of Indonesian-based Telapak stating that, “the concept of calling an oil plantation a forest has no basis in fact. It is merely a cover to help investors convert forests.”

The clearing of Indonesia’s rain forest for palm oil plantations is having profound effects – threatening endangered species, upending the lives of indigenous people, and releasing massive amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

….. (The) oil palm — that like corn and soybeans is rapidly becoming one of the world’s major sources of biofuel.

Not long ago, biofuels were billed as a green dream come true, a way to burn less fossil fuel and shrink our carbon footprint. But today, mounting evidence indicates that producing biofuels — particularly those derived from food crops such as corn and oil palm — may be doing considerably more harm to the planet than good, actually increasing greenhouse gas emissions and driving up food prices worldwide.

Some of the most devastating costs of the biofuel revolution are on display in Indonesia, where massive clearing of tropical forests for oil palm plantations has caused staggering environmental damage and tremendous loss of biodiversity. Only the Amazon and Africa’s Congo basin harbor more tropical forests than Indonesia, but the reality today is that all three regions are seeing their rain forests disappear at an alarming rate. And in the Amazon and Indonesia, growing world demand for food and biofuel is now driving much of the damage.

A flurry of scientific field work and environmental reports have linked the spread of oil palm plantations in Indonesia to the decimation of rain forests, increased conflict between logging and oil palm interests and rural and indigenous people, and massive CO2 emissions through logging, burning, and the draining of carbon-rich peat lands. And most of the trouble, (as I learned on a recent visit – see article,) is playing out in the Indonesian lowland rain forests on Sumatra and Borneo, an ecosystem long regarded as a global hotspot for rare and endemic species — but perhaps not for much longer.

And all of this is happening because bio fuels? Being accomplished to save the planet, because of climate change? When was the last time you read a fairy tale, and believed it body and soul? Oh, you still do huh? Well how about this time, you follow the dollar instead of the Myth of Man made Climate Change.

You can say goodbye to the Tiger if this continues; Orangutans will disappear too. To some that seems such a small price to pay to save the planet.

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About JustMEinT Musings

I like writing, reading and expressing my opinions. I prefer natural health and healing to pharmaceutical drugs. Jesus Christ is my Lord and Saviour.
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