This is going to be just a delightful little conundrum for the fools over at Friends of the Earth and Greenpeace. For two of their advocacies now come into direct conflict.
As we know we should all stop using those precious natural resources like oil and natural gas. Instead we must produce vegetable oils or ethanol from sugar to power our civilisation. Because it’s renewable, d’ye see?
But it’s also true that palm oil is the very Devil itself. Disturbs the orangutans, see? We definitely don’t want to do that.
So, if someone says that they’re going to fire up the society by using palm oil what is the confused environmentalist to do? Applaud the national self sufficiency of the renewables or object to the palm oil?
Indonesian presidential hopefuls vow energy self-sufficiency through palm
That’s actually both of them:
Indonesia’s two presidential candidates pledged on Sunday (Feb 17) to achieve energy self-sufficiency by boosting the use of bioenergy, particularly fuelled by palm oil, to cut costly oil imports by Southeast Asia’s biggest economy. Indonesia, the world’s biggest palm oil producer, has been pushing for all diesel fuel used in the country to contain biodiesel to boost palm consumption, slash fuel imports, and narrow a yawning current account gap. In a televised election debate, President Joko Widodo said if he won a second term the government planned to implement a B100 programme, referring to fuel made entirely from palm oil, after last year making it mandatory to use biodiesel containing 20 per cent bio-content (B20).
Just what will Jocasta and Julian do about this?
A recent report by the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, concluded that boycotting palm oil would merely shift – rather than counter – losses to rainforests and wildlife caused by agriculture. Put simply, boycotted palm oil would need to be replaced by other types of vegetable oil to meet global demand – and that could actually make matters worse. This is because, compared to other common sources of vegetable oil – such as rape seed and soybeans – palm oil crops yield four to ten times more oil per unit of land, and require far less pesticide and fertiliser. In fact, palm oil makes up 35% of all vegetable oils, grown on just 10% of the land allocated to oil crops.
Palm oil really is the efficient method of doing it.
It’s going to be such fun watching the environmentalists try to work this one out.