I don’t normally stand up on my box and preach or ask you to sign any petitions. But the following information is close to my heart. It is also a little different from my normal posts. So I would appreciate it if you would read on. But you may wish to grab a cuppa first.
And before I prattle on – if you don’t feel comfortable signing the petition that is okay. But this information may just open your eyes a little if you are not familiar with the devastation caused by the cultivation of crops to produce palm oil.
So off I go ….
I have boycotted palm oil products for years (as best as I knowingly can) due to the devastating effect it has on native flora and fauna, particularly orangutans. Orangutans are facing extinction unless we do something about it.
So I have just put together (quickly) some information if you don’t know much about the destruction that has already been done and continues to be done (often illegally) due to the cultivation of crops to produce palm oil (or oil palm).
And if you feel the plight of the orangutans could you kindly sign the petition link at the end of my sermon.
And thanks for reading on.
Orangutans are facing extinction due to the unsustainable production of palm oil, an ingredient estimated to be in half of all supermarket products, including food products, cleaning products, detergents/washing powders and liquids, cosmetics, and candles. Australian consumers currently can’t tell whether they are contributing to this crisis because most manufacturers are not transparent about their use of palm oil or their sources. Reference: http://www.zoo.org.au/get-involved/act-for-wildlife/dont-palm-us-off
Worldwide demand for palm oil has increased sharply over the last few years. With 54 million tons in 2011, it is the most widely produced vegetable oil worldwide. It has the highest yield of any oil crop and is the cheapest vegetable oil to produce and refine.
Its properties make it highly versatile in the food and chemical industries. It has a high melting point, making it smooth and easy to spread. Reference: http://www.rainforest-rescue.org/topics/palm-oil
However, oil palm (palm oil) plantation will only last for approximately 20 to 50 years before then the soil is completely drained of its vital nutrients and the palm trees too matured to produce palm fruit. As such, palm oil is very much a short-term commodity, and not a long-term sustainable solution. Reference: http://www.saynotopalmoil.com/
In South-East Asia, alone, the likely equivalent of 300 football fields are deforested every hour, resulting in the deaths of more than 1,000 orangutans each year. Some 90% of orangutan habitat has been lost and at the current rate of deforestation, orangutans could be extinct in the wild in less than 10 years. Reference: http://www.wwf.org.au/our_work/saving_the_natural_world/forests/palm_oil/palm_oil_and_deforestation/
Yes Government and organisations can argue that oil palm is a valuable economic crop providing a source of local employment. But what about the prolific destruction of virgin rainforest and subsequent loss of habitat for endangered species like Orangutans, tigers and many other species of flora and fauna?
Furthermore, ‘orangutans are a vital part of the rainforest ecosystem in South-East Asia. They are a keystone species. For example, orangutans help spread many tree seeds; many of which can only germinate once they have passed through the gut of an orangutan. These beautiful apes are vital in order to preserve the delicate ecosystems of Borneo and Sumatra and maintain the rich bio-diversity of Fauna and Flora in these dense jungles. Orangutans cannot live without the rainforest, and the rainforest cannot live without orangutans.’ Reference: http://www.saynotopalmoil.com/
Why you are being asked to sign a petition:
Right now in one of Indonesia’s most pristine and untouched forests, a local Governor wants to let mining and palm oil companies move in to decimate areas the size of a million football fields! And the national Forestry Ministry looks like it might let him unless the President steps in to reject this orangutan-killing plan.
Where will this petition be sent?
It is addressed to:
To President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono of Indonesia, Minister of Forestry Zulkifli Hasan, and Governor of Aceh Zaini Abdullah:
‘As concerned citizens we urge you to reject the plan to cut down protected rainforests in Aceh. Indonesia’s majestic forests are a global treasure, and we encourage engagement with the local community to develop a plan that prioritises sustainable development, and that protects this fragile ecosystem and the animals that live there.’
If you are happy to add your signature please click on the following link:
Avaaz is a global web movement to bring people-powered politics to decision-making everywhere.
Avaaz is a non-profit organization that receives no money from government or corporations–we rely entirely on donations from the public.
Mining company working with Indonesian government to strip forest of protected status (The Guardian)
Govt to extend forestry moratorium over business objections: Deputy Minister (Jakarta Post)
President Yudhoyono promises to dedicate the next three years to protecting Indonesia’s forests (REDD monitor)
Conservation scientists: Aceh’s spatial plan a risk to forests, wildlife, and people (Mongabay)
Indonesia’s Protected Rainforests Disappearing (Huffington Post)
Aceh draft bylaw risks forests, say activists (Jakarta Post)
Rudi H. Putra: Winner 2013 Future For Nature