Sustainable Palm in Indonesia

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Zany_in_CO

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Megan

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Lately, I've been seriously considering incorporating RSPO palm into my formula...although I feel like moving from palm-free to using palm is generally the opposite of what I see people doing nowadays.
 

Stephd31

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Thanks for this post. When I first started making soap I tried to be palm-free, but couldn't find a good alternative because I'm not a huge fan of shea butter. This makes me feel a little better that I gave up and went with RSPO instead.
 

Marsi

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The referenced article is an opinion piece written by the RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil)
in the article "Few industries in Indonesia have shown as strong growth as the palm oil industry in the past 20 years"

a positive?
"Indonesia is aiming to reduce its annual primary forest deforestation to 325,000 hectares a year" *4
The RSPO will certify land that has been deforested *2
In the first 3 months of this year Indonesia "lost" 321,000 acres of forest *5

While it sounds good on the surface, the ongoing massive primary forest clearing to grow palm trees is having a devastating effect on the land and local climate, with escalating flood, fire and landslide events in Indonesia. RSPO does not guarantee support for the small farmer or forest protection, it is an industry certification.

lo0ok at google maps satellite


References:
(*1) Deforested land area counted in the millions of hectares

(*2) RSPO certifies palm plantations for deforested land
"Three-quarters of oil palm concessions in Indonesia and Malaysian Borneo certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil occupy land that was forest and/or wildlife habitat as recently as 30 years ago, a new study shows."

(*3) the RSPO has certified millions of hectares of palm plantations

(*4) "Indonesia is aiming to reduce their annual (primary forest) deforestation to 325,000 hectares per year in the next decade"

(*5) "The study, which analyzed satellite data from 18 countries compiled by the University of Maryland, shows Indonesia lost the most forest area, at more than 130,000 hectares (321,000 acres)"
 

Stephd31

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The referenced article is an opinion piece written by the RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil)
in the article "Few industries in Indonesia have shown as strong growth as the palm oil industry in the past 20 years"

a positive?
"Indonesia is aiming to reduce its annual primary forest deforestation to 325,000 hectares a year" *4
The RSPO will certify land that has been deforested *2
In the first 3 months of this year Indonesia "lost" 321,000 acres of forest *5

While it sounds good on the surface, the ongoing massive primary forest clearing to grow palm trees is having a devastating effect on the land and local climate, with escalating flood, fire and landslide events in Indonesia. RSPO does not guarantee support for the small farmer or forest protection, it is an industry certification.

lo0ok at google maps satellite


References:
(*1) Deforested land area counted in the millions of hectares

(*2) RSPO certifies palm plantations for deforested land
"Three-quarters of oil palm concessions in Indonesia and Malaysian Borneo certified by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil occupy land that was forest and/or wildlife habitat as recently as 30 years ago, a new study shows."

(*3) the RSPO has certified millions of hectares of palm plantations

(*4) "Indonesia is aiming to reduce their annual (primary forest) deforestation to 325,000 hectares per year in the next decade"

(*5) "The study, which analyzed satellite data from 18 countries compiled by the University of Maryland, shows Indonesia lost the most forest area, at more than 130,000 hectares (321,000 acres)"
Marsi, thank you for the additional resources.
 

TheGecko

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I'm trying to understand what the point of your response is. Yes, it is known that deforestation is still happening, and not just for palm production. According to No, palm oil is not responsible for 40% of global deforestation

"Agriculture is therefore the leading cause of global deforestation, with 24% of the land used for livestock and 29% for crops. The report provides some details of the 29% chunk of deforestation due to agricultural crops, highlighting the crops with the highest contributions – soybean (19%), maize (11%), oil palm (8% %), rice (6%) and sugarcane (5%)."

From The geopolitics of palm oil and deforestation

"Palm plantations are reputed to be a major factor of deforestation. However, despite such widespread perceptions, palm plantations are responsible for only 3% of global deforestation. In Indonesia and Malaysia, deforestation peaked decades ago, and was already decreasing before palm oil started to take off. Palm plantations mostly replaced other agricultural uses. For example, in Malaysia the major phase of deforestation occurred for the development of rubber estates, before the 1980s. Almost all of the rubber plantations were later replaced by palm plantations (figure 10).

Some palm plantations were established in lands that were previously forested, but the real share of deforestation caused by palm oil plantations peaked in the 1990s and has decreased consistently since. It is now almost non-existent in Malaysia (below 1%). In Indonesia, the peak was between 2000 and 2008, and has now decreased to 5% (figure 11).
"

Now to understand my POV, I come from an town in the US that was devastated by the "Spotted Owl" controversy that started in the mid-80s. A lot of folks try to downplay the devastation by pointing out that there was already a decline because of dwindling old-growth forest harvests and automation of the lumber industry. Which can be said of just about any industry during the same time from (40s through the 60s) as new technologies came on board One study often used in the argument was that the environmental protection was not a significant factor in job loss...except that the job loss was 80%; pretty significant if you ask me. But what the hey, new jobs were created for biologists conducting surveys for spotted owls.

But the one thing that folks don't talk about...is the towns affected by that 80% job loss. Effects that can still be seen almost 40 years later by simply driving down the main streets of these town. My old town has been fairly lucky...we still had our grass seed farms, our berry farms and an annual festival, and in the last decade we brought in a Distribution Center, a Medical College and a Veteran's Home. But down town never recovered...a third of the buildings are still empty and what isn't a second-hand shop are little 'craft' businesses. And the town just to the east of us...half of of their downtown is still boarded up and the one thing that they managed to bring in that the town was completely dependent on...was cancelled this year.

It turns out the the Spotted Owl didn't care if it lived in 'old growth' or new growth, it just want a tree. And despite all the conversation efforts, the Spotted Owl numbers are still declining.

So I support RSPO.
 

Marsi

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the article is an Indonesian RSPO opinion piece
my reply is to the topic of RSPO certification in Indonesia

the rate of old forest clearing in Indonesia is massive and ongoing
in some areas the rate of old growth forest (hundreds to thousands of years old) is being cleared at an increasing rate
RSPO has certified palm plantations in Indonesia that were originally old forests cleared for palm plantations

Indonesia is not a great example of sustainable palm farming and no amount of RSPO certification is going to change that
 
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