This week, French news agency AFP reported about the ongoing discriminatory campaign by Europe against Palm Oil biofuel exports and the lasting damage it would have on Malaysia’s Small Farmers.
Following the most recent defeat of efforts to ban Palm Oil used as biofuels as part of the latest RED revision text in June, the European Commission is now considering whether to classify Palm Oil as a “High Risk” biofuel.
Malaysian Palm Oil small farmers know a ban when we see one, and will continue to oppose any discriminatory measures from the EU towards Palm Oil.
“The policies that the EU is proposing to introduce will harm Malaysia’s rural communities and reduce incomes for Malaysian families,” said Douglas Uggah Embas, deputy chief minister of Sarawak state on Borneo island, home to many smallholders”.
“Critics say that palm oil development also contributes to climate change through deliberate forest-clearing fires, which release carbon dioxide into the atmosphere and lung-clogging smog into the region’s air. Many under-pressure firms made “no deforestation” pledges, but activists say they are tough to monitor and frequently broken in the vast jungles of Sumatra and Borneo island. This week, Greenpeace said a group of Indonesian palm oil firms that supply major international brands including Unilever and Nestle have cleared an area of rainforest almost twice the size of Singapore in less than three years. But Malaysian farmer Mansor rejects the depiction of growers as an environmental threat. “(The EU) says we cut down the forest. But my land is on peat soil – there was rubber growing here before,” he said. “How can the EU claim that I’m killing the earth?”.
“An EU ban would threaten the livelihoods of 650,000 smallholders and over 3.2 million Malaysians who rely on the industry”.
Read the full story from AFP here.