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Oil palm or forests? : more than a question of definition

Document type: report
Download file(s): 443188 (1079 KB)
Abstract: In April 2009, in order to ensure that bioenergy is produced sustainably, the EU issued the Renewable Energy Directive (RED, Directive 2009/28/EC). The Directive sets out the sustainability criteria for biofuels and bioliquids produced within the EU and imports of these products from elsewhere. During discussions in the context of the RED, doubts arose early in 2010 as to whether oil palm plantations should be classified as continuously forested areas, since the commonly used definitions of forest and agriculture define oil palm as an agricultural crop. There was a fear that if oil palm plantations in the RED fell within the definition of forests, this would open up the possibility of high-quality forests being converted into low-quality oil palm plantations. To support discussion in the Netherlands on definitions and conversion, Tropenbos International (TBI) carried out a brief study of the literature on definitions of forest and agriculture and on forest conversion. The literature study also considered what needs to be included in a substantiated and credible assessment, in order to determine the conditions under which it is justifiable to convert forest into oil palm plantations or other types of land use. This Policy Brief summarizes the results of the study. It is meant to stimulate dialogue and to assist in the formation of opinions within policy and operational processes.
Authors: Dijk, K. van , Savenije, H.
Series Title: Policy Brief
Category: Policy
ISBN: 978-90-5113-095-9
Keywords: agriculture , enterprises , forestry , natural resources
Language: eng
Organization: Tropenbos International
PAGE: 16
Place: Wageningen
Publisher: Tropenbos International
Year: 2010
Right: © 2010 Tropenbos International
Subject: Environment and Natural Resources
Title: Oil palm or forests? : more than a question of definition