This paper shines light on the issue of greenhouse gas emissions due to conversion of areas with peatsoils for palm oil production, including for biodiesel. The paper will focus on palm oil in Southeast Asia; the most relevant area for vegetable oil production on peatlands, with alarming greenhouse gas emissions as a result.
Information sheet on palm oil & peatlandsdownload
Biofuel use and palm oil production on peatlands
Increasing demands for vegetable oil have led to a massive expansion in palm oil production. Increased biodiesel use in for instance Europe, will add directly to this global growth in demand, in prices and in production areas.
Palm oil and carbon dioxide emissions: peatlands are the crucial factor
In peatswamp forest areas that were logged in the past, the remaining peat – carbon stocks are still huge and generally larger than the pristine forest cover. This carbon stock is rapidly lost due to drainage inpalm oil plantations.