Thursday, November 7, 2013

New Research Questions Effectiveness of RSPO Standards

"Members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) are violating the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities in the forests and peatlands of tropical nations worldwide, according to a new research publication released today. The study details the performance of 16 oil palm operations, many run by RSPO members, reporting on their failure to uphold human rights and environmental standards required.

'Since its founding eight years ago, the RSPO has adopted good standards, but too many member companies are not delivering on these paper promises,' said Norman Jiwan, Executive Director of Transformasi Untuk Keadilan Indonesia, a human rights organisation based in Jakarta. 'The RSPO could still meet this challenge if it provides remedies for member companies’ impacts on communities, but for that we need much stricter enforcement. The organisation’s very credibility is at stake.'

The book 'Conflict or consent? The oil palm sector at a crossroads' details cases in which palm oil producers have failed to obtain permission from communities - a process required by the RSPO based on the UN mandate that is known as free, prior and informed consent. The findings also support accounts of the destructive impact that the palm oil developments are having on indigenous peoples and local communities." To download the report, edited by Marcus Colchester and Sophie Chao (Forest Peoples Programme), and related materials, please visit:

Source: Forest Peoples Programme Press Release, 6 November 2013

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