NGOs allege illegal deforestation of primary rainforest to plant cacao and oil palm
Cattle-ranching, logging, mining, highways, hydroelectric dam projects, oil and gas, soy, oil palm. . . These are what first come to mind to many people when thinking about how the Amazon is being destroyed, but what about chocolate too?
NGO Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) released a report on 7 April mainly about monoculture oil palm plantations, which it describes as a “major new threat to Peruvian forests.” The report, Deforestation by Definition, focuses on the Romero Group, Peru’s “largest economic actor”, and what it calls the “Melka Group”, a network of 25 companies recently established in Peru and controlled by businessman Dennis Melka, a major player in the destructive oil palm industry in Malaysia.
Despite claims to investors, the Melka Group has repeatedly failed to abide by Peruvian environmental management laws and policies. . . In Tamshiyacu, Cacao del Peru Norte SAC began clearing forested land in June 2013 without submitting any of the required documents or obtaining any of the approvals necessary to carry out this deforestation. . . In his presentation to the Peruvian Congress, Minister [of Agriculture and Irrigation] Benites noted that regarding the deforestation after November 2012, the company did not even fulfil the requirements in the first step.Continue reading...
Now in its third season, VICE on HBO has provided powerful investigative reports on some of the most compelling and urgent issues around the world. In its latest episode airing tonight, the VICE team travels to Indonesia to see how the expansion of palm oil plantations and deforestation have impacted wildlife populations, local communities, and our global climate. The report also includes an interview with Forest Heroes chairman Glenn Hurowitz, among others.
Watch a sneak peak of the episode, showing the work of the Sumatran Orangutan Conservation Program to protect critically endangered populations in Indonesia:
City links: Breezy Dutch housing, a colourful atlas of New York’s trees and unusual posters on London’s street corners feature in this week’s best city stories
This week’s best city stories from around the web take us from an inhabitable wind turbine in Rotterdam to the streets of Detroit, where residents reflect on the city’s future. And for the tree nerds out there: wait until you see the atlas of all of New York City’s tree species.
We’d love to hear your responses to these stories and any others you’ve read recently, both at Guardian Cities and elsewhere: share your thoughts in the comments below.Continue reading...