“Zero deforestation” supply chains tainted by illegal palm oil from Sumatra, as demand exceeds supply of clean produce

Wednesday, July 25th, 2018

An investigation in Sumatra has exposed, again, that major palm oil traders are sourcing palm oil produced illegally in the island’s heavily threatened and biologically valuable protected areas.

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GVL drops out of RSPO, months after rebuke for a litany of rights abuses

Wednesday, July 25th, 2018

A subsidiary of the giant palm oil and paper conglomerate Sinar Mas has withdrawn from the RSPO, five months after it was rebuked by the certification scheme for coercing communities into giving “consent” to its operations in Liberia.

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World’s largest pension fund dumps shares in beef firm in wake of corruption scandal

Tuesday, July 24th, 2018

The Norwegian state pension fund has decided to divest from JBS on the basis of an investigation earlier this month, on the grounds that there was “an unacceptable risk” that a company is “contributing to or is itself responsible for gross corruption”.

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Major ag traders fined for buying grain from illegally deforested land in Cerrado

Tuesday, July 24th, 2018

Cargill and Bunge have been fined by the Brazilian authorities for buying grain from illegally deforested areas in the Cerrado.

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EU urged to regulate to stem deforestation in cocoa industry

Friday, July 13th, 2018

In a hearing at the European Parliament, MEPs and NGOs urged the European Union to regulate to stem deforestation in the cocoa industry after the failure of voluntary measures, according to Reuters.

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Analysis: Are US investors aware of the legal risks of forest crimes?

Thursday, July 12th, 2018

This analysis, by Gabriel Thoumi and Anthony Mansell of Climate Advisers, examines the potential for investors in the US to be prosecuted for forest crimes that took place in other jurisdictions. It draws upon a six-month legal review involving finance professionals and experts in US law enforcement.

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Ivy League investment in Brazilian ag mired in allegations of land grabbing and illegal deforestation

Thursday, March 29th, 2018

Harvard’s US$37.1 billion endowment fund has invested in a vast farm in the Brazilian ag frontier that has been plagued by allegations of illegal deforestation and violent expulsion of small-scale farmers from their homes, an investigation by Mongabay has found.

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Illegal ranching and cattle smuggling threatens protected areas in Lacandon Jungle

Thursday, March 29th, 2018

Protected areas within the vast Lacandon Jungle, which straddles the border of Mexico and Guatemala, area increasingly under threat from illegal cattle ranching, according to an investigation by Mongabay Latam.

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Powerful agribusiness lobbying and erosion of regulations driving deforestation to new heights in Australia

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

A surge of deforestation in eastern Australia driven by cattle ranching has made it one of the world’s worst places for forest destruction, facilitated by a powerful agricultural lobby that is eroding the rule of law.

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Communities denounce violence and human rights violations in the Brazilian Cerrado’s ag frontier

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

Civil society organisations in the Brazilian Cerrado have issued a statement denouncing the “alarming increase in violence and violations of rights of the communities” associated with a government-driven agricultural project.

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Brazil Supreme Court ruling upholds amnesty to illegal deforesters as cash from bad ag flushes into the coffers of congressmen

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

Brazil’s Supreme Court has upheld several controversial revisions to the Forest Code that will greenwash illegal deforestation and, critics argue, will increase criminal behaviour by ag firms in the Amazon.

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GVL rebuked for “coercing” communities in Liberia

Wednesday, March 28th, 2018

An investigation the world’s leading palm oil certification body has confirmed that a litany of social abuses have been committed by a major plantation firm in Liberia.

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COMMENT: To prevent a repeat in the Congo Basin of the disaster seen elsewhere, urgent action is needed. The key lies with the region’s governments, and the international donors who support them.

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018

In March 2018 Earthsight, the investigative non-profit behind Illegal Deforestation Monitor, released The Coming Storm, a report exposing the secrecy and collusion in industrial agriculture which are threatening the Congo Basin’s forests. In the following extract, the report’s authors discuss the implications of its findings.

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Asian governments backing deforestation in Gabon and Cameroon

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018

In March 2018 Earthsight, the investigative non-profit behind Illegal Deforestation Monitor, released The Coming Storm, a report exposing the secrecy and collusion in industrial agriculture which are threatening the Congo Basin’s forests. In an extract from the report, this post exposes the connections between the Singaporean and Chinese governments and two of the projects which have cleared the most forest to-date.

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Secrecy, illegality and deforestation in a billionaire’s pet palm oil project in Cameroon

Thursday, March 22nd, 2018

In March 2018 Earthsight, the investigative non-profit behind Illegal Deforestation Monitor, released The Coming Storm, a report exposing the secrecy and collusion in industrial agriculture which are threatening the Congo Basin’s forests. This extract details a company in Cameroon which at the end of 2017 was clearing forest faster than any other in the region.

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