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The forest fires blanketing Southeast Asia in a choking
haze are on track to become among the worst on record,
NASA has warned.
A prolonged dry season is hampering efforts to curb a crisis
that has persisted for nearly two decades.
Large parts of Indonesia have now been in a state of
emergency for over a month.
The 2015 Southeast Asian haze is an air pollution crisis
affecting several countries in Southeast Asia, including Brunei,
Indonesia (especially its islands of Sumatra and Kalimantan),
Malaysia, Singapore, Southern Thailand, and Vietnam,
Cambodia and the Philippines.
The haze has affected Indonesia from at least late June,
eventually turning into an international problem for other
countries from September. It is the latest occurrence of the
Southeast Asian haze, a long-term issue that occurs in varying
intensity during every dry season in the region. It is caused
by forest fires resulting from illegal slash-and-burn practices,
principally on the Indonesian islands of Sumatra and Kalimantan,
which can then spread quickly in the dry season
This slash and burn farming , to produce palm oil is not new .
Since at least 2006 , this mess has been a recurring problem.
"In this dry season, people in Singapore, Malaysia and parts of Indonesia
were plagued by the incessant forest burning by plantation owners in
Indonesia. In the islands of Kalimantan and Sumatra, large tracts of virgin
rainforest have been set ablaze in order to clear land for palm trees and
pulp wood(which your "virgin pulp" paper is made from) plantations. This
inconsiderate act of forest clearing by fire has caused at least 1600+ fire
spots which are hard to put out and affected the life of millions living in
Nearly 100,000 fires are burning, setting up what looks
to be the worst fire year in the region since 2006. The
carbon emissions from the blazes have now surpassed
those of the entire United States — the world’s second-
largest emitter of greenhouse gases — on 26 out of 44
days since September, according to a report by the
World Resources Institute.
Here's a map of the extent of the problem .
So again the profit margin , marginalises the people
in it's way !
'Business as usual'!
edit on 30-10-2015 by radarloveguy because: xxx
The fires are caused by firms and farmers engaging in illegal slash-and-burn practices as a relatively inexpensive means to clear their land of unwanted vegetation and peat. Sumatra and Kalimantan possess large areas of peatland, which is highly combustible during dry season. Peat, which is made up of layers of dead vegetation and other organic matter, contributed heavily to carbon emissions because of the substance's high density and carbon content. The haze has been particularly severe in 2015 due to the El Niño phenomenon, which has caused drier conditions, allowing the fires to spread more.
Research published in the Environmental Research Letters stated that 59% of fire emissions in Sumatra and 73% in Kalimantan originated from "outside timber and palm oil concession boundaries". Environmental rights activists however said that palm oil activities are still involved in the burning. Firstly, land clearing by burning is cheap and is more often chosen by companies than any other land-clearing method. Secondly, most companies want to avoid spending money on reforestation. Any company which obtains a license for forest lands must replant them from a fund provided by the government. Most companies do not replant, and to avoid detection, they burn the land. Thirdly, the companies revitalise palm plantations by cutting or burning old palm trees that are no longer productive. The regulation stipulates that such burning must be done on a bed of concrete to avoid spreading the fire, but to reduce costs, most companies do not do this.
originally posted by: TiredofControlFreaks
a reply to: radarloveguy
hate to inform you of this but......
I have long said that the people who think global warming is an emergency are talking the talk but NOT walking the walk.
This crisis was created by the demand for palm oil. Palm oil is used to create biofuels. The European governments who want to tax everyone to death to combat global warming passing laws requiring that gasoline contain a certain percentage of biofuels.
It has long been known that growing biofuels is more profitable than growing food crops. The demand for palm oil has fueled deforestration in south asia and increased the price of Food.
It is also known that biofuels require a litre and half of gasoline to produce, are less energy effecient then pure gasoline, create more air pollution when burned then gasoline and yet the practice of producing biofuel remains.
The people who produce palm oil plantations are getting carbon credits because every year, they grow another crop of palm oil and then they can sell the carbon credits.
Tell me this is not a scam!
Palm oil is the second most traded vegetable oil crop in the world, after soy4
, and over 90%
of the world’s palm oil exports are produced in Malaysia and Indonesia5
. Palm oil is still
mostly used in the manufacture of food products and is found in one in ten products sold in
However, palm oil is now starting to be used as an ingredient in bio-diesel and as a fuel to
be burnt in power stations to produce electricity. This is a new market for palm oil which has
the potential to dramatically increase global demand for this commodity.
The development of the oil palm industry in Indonesia and Malaysia has brought economic
benefits to both these countries. However it has also generated considerable environmental
and social costs.
The development of oil palm plantations is one of the biggest causes of rainforest clearance.
The palm oil industry has already set up 6.5 million hectares of oil palm plantations across
Sumatra and Borneo but it is estimated that it is probably responsible for the destruction of
10 million hectares of rainforest.7
By clearing the forest first, plantation companies can offset the start up costs of their
plantations. The profits are so large that some oil palm companies clear the land and don’t
even bother to set up the plantation. There is therefore a strong incentive for oil palm
companies to seek concessions and access to land that is heavily forested.
Oil palm plantation development also poses the greatest threat to the survival of many
species, including the orang-utan. Oil palm plantations could be responsible for at least half
of the observed reduction in orang-utan habitat in the decade between 1992 and 2003.8
Tropical deforestation due to agricultural expansion, logging and infrastructure development
already contributes between 10 and 30 per cent of greenhouse global emissions.9
demand for biofuels is almost doubling the challenge of producing more food. Since 2004, for every additional ton of grain needed to feed a growing world population, rising government requirements for ethanol from grain have demanded a matching ton. Brazil's reliance on sugar ethanol and Europe's on biodiesel have comparably increased growth rates in the demand for sugar and driven up demand for vegetable oil.