Food Or Fuel? The Problem with Palm Oil


There’s a vicious cycle underway, and we need to break out of it for the sake of some close relatives.

You’ll have noticed fuel prices rising recently. Here’s the reason. And now palm oil production has escalated (in that capitalism-out-of-control way that we’re so familiar with in the West), and it’s causing grievous ecological damage. As Grist reports, the habitat of the orangutan is being razed in a shocking programme of wholesale deforestation.

Greenpeace is on the case and lobbying the Bali government, amongst others. But in the meantime, the Rainforest Action Network are lobbying usThe Problem with Palm Oil is a new site that takes a long, hard look at the products on our shelves in the search for unnecessary palm oil (personally, I think it’s driveways that deserve the scrutiny) – and they want to make clear that the majority of agrofuels, as they are being produced in the world today, are not eco-friendly. (Saying otherwise is greenwashing of the highest order).

Is this the way to tackle the crisis? Have a read and let us know your thoughts.

Image: ianmichaelthomas

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Mike Sowden

Mike Sowden is a freelance writer based in the north of England, obsessed with travel, storytelling and terrifyingly strong coffee. He has written for online & offline publications including Mashable, Matador Network and the San Francisco Chronicle, and his work has been linked to by Lonely Planet, World Hum and Lifehacker. If all the world is a stage, he keeps tripping over scenery & getting tangled in the curtain - but he's just fine with that.