Each of us contributes daily to the tragedy that is taking place in developing countries, especially in Indonesia. Even with the best of our intentions, the multinationals do impose us the environment-killer Number 1: Palm oil. Almost everything we use on a daily basis, e.g. chocolate, crisps, convenience meals/products, soap, detergents and countless other everyday products contain palm oil.
Why? First and foremost because it is cheap!
Palm oil is being produced on deforested (rainforest) land. With every product we consume, we involuntarily contribute to the destruction of rainforest! The felling of each rainforest tree, contributes to the increase of CO2, the decrease of cloud cover and the loss of habitat for thousands of animals and plants! For more detailed information concerning palm oil, please have a look at the palmoil section.
We can change this!
Where there is no demand, the supply dries up!
We are able to stand up to corrupt multinationals and governments by uniting refusing to buy products containing palm oil. On our website you can check which companies refrain from using palm oil in their products. It requires extra attentiveness when shopping but if we avoid buying products containing palm oil, less rainforest is going to be destroyed.
Several very useful Apps can show you, while shopping, which products contain palm oil by scanning the barcode. The App explains all ingredients contained in the respective product. One of these Apps is Codecheck: this smart bar code scanner gives experts’ valuations on more than 19 million cosmetics, food and household products. The App points out which ingredients are problematic and provides healthier alternatives. Experts listed are organisations like Greenpeace, BUND, Ökotest, WWF, Food Standard Agency, Verbraucher Initiative e.V., Stiftung für Konsumentenschutz, Natürlich Leben or Vier Pfoten. The App can be downloaded from the following link: https://www.codecheck.info
NB: At the moment this App is not available in the Luxembourgish App store.
EC Directive 2009/28/EC (Energy from Renewable Sources Directive) presets the goal of 10 percent renewable energy for the transportation sector. It furthermore gives instructions for biomass production and biomass processing in a sustainable way as a requirement for market access in the form of verifiable testing criteria for the sustainability certification system. The requirements apply to the decrease of green house gases in biofuel as compared to fossil fuel (since 2017 at least 50%) as well as information about the origin of the biomass.
This directive should have had a positive impact on the environment. However, if one adds up the CO2 emissions created by burning the fuels and the emissions from their production, and compares them to the one from fossil fuels, then biofuel comes out with much worse statistics than fossil fuels:87,5 gram CO2 at 1 mega joule thermal value, compared with Diesel made of palm oil which releases 105 gr CO2 into the atmosphere.
In the meantime, the fact that biofuel has a worse carbon footprint than fossil fuels has even been seen by the EU Commission: It admits that in the past the CO2 balance of biofuel was calculated incorrectly.
Nowadays about 50% of total palm oil imports in Europe are added to biodiesel. In Germany biodiesel contains up to 25% palm oil. So all of us – unknowingly – are pumping palm oil into our fuel tank.
Sadly many logging firms get their state concessions renewed over and over again, which means that they continue to have the right to cut down large areas of rainforest in Borneo.
Many species in Indonesia are being caught illegally and either kept as pets by private persons or exported illegally to foreign countries as pets or are killed to make belts, potency enhancing pills or decorative articles. Due to the deforestation, many other animal species are also forced to the edge of the rainforest and thus become easy prey for poachers. The roads - made by the palm oil industry – into the rainforest also facilitate access for poachers.
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