The Impact Of Palm Oil Plantations And Carbon Emissions

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Accounting for 11% of Indonesia’s export earnings, palm oil is the most valuable agricultural export. Creating many environmental problems, including globally, cultivating large quantities of palm involves clearing substantial areas of virgin tropical rain forest. Additionally, local communities, indigenous people, and small landowners are driven from their own land. Leading to more than 700 land conflicts, human rights violations are increasingly breached, even on ‘sustainable’ plantations. Palm oil companies are regulated by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), however, corruption and illegal practice are widely identified. What is Palm Oil? What Are the Effects of Palm Oil Plantations? Peat and Carbon Emissions Establishing a palm oil plantation often involves planting on peatland; encompassing carbon-rich, partly decomposed organic matter. In order for agriculture to be successful, peatlands must be drained or burned, to dry the land. Consequences of burning or draining, means large amounts of carbon are released into the atmosphere. Analysing carbon emissions, the World Resources Institute (WRI), state that draining a single hectare is equivalent to burning more than 6,000 gallons of gasoline. Subsequently, Indonesia, in 2015 exceeded the average daily emissions by the U.S. economy. Bulldozing Rainforests Due to peatland being difficult and expensive to make into fertile soil, palm oil companies prefer to clear rain forests. Not needing to use chemical

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