The UN climate negotiations that will take place in Paris are sponsored by a series of polluting companies. Among these companies are two that are also involved in REDD projects: Air France and BNP Paribas.
The Holistic Conservation Programme for Forests is a REDD project in Madagascar covering a total area of 515,000 hectares. It is funded by Air France and run by WWF Madagascar, with support from Etc Terra and the GoodPlanet Foundation.
WWF loves “sustainability”. With “sustainability”, there’s no need to address over-consumption, or the never-ending growth of capitalist expansion. Consumption can increase, as long as it’s “sustainable”.
“If it’s wrong to wreck the climate, it’s wrong to profit from that wreckage.” That’s the slogan of the Fossil Free Movement, a campaign started by Bill McKibben and 350.org to persuade “educational and religious institutions, city and state governments, and other institutions that serve the public good” to divest from fossil fuels.
On 13 September 2007, the Indonesian Government adopted the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Five years later, Survival International announced that “Indonesia treats its indigenous and tribal people, especially in West Papua, worse than any other country in the world.” What went wrong?
On 19 June 2012 at 2.45 am, the world’s governments at Rio +20 agreed a draft text on “The Future We Want”. If it’s accepted in its current form, Rio +20 will go down in history to be followed inevitably by the word failure.
Under a REDD mechanism, forests are valued primarily as stores of carbon. REDD aims to save the forests by trading the carbon stored in the forests, making the trees worth more standing than cleared. For REDD to save the forests, we have to create a market for forest carbon.
WWF is embroiled in a two-part scandal over its work in Tanzania. In October 2011, thousands of villagers were evicted from a WWF project area in the Rufiji Delta. This year WWF Tanzania staff were caught embezzling funds.
A year-long investigation by Greenpeace reveals that Asia Pulp and Paper is pulping ramin trees to produce paper. In 2001, Indonesia banned the logging of ramin trees. Ramin is listed under Appendix II of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) and cannot be exported without special permits.
WWF, the world’s biggest environmental organisation, is under fire. On 23 June 2011, the German TV station ARD broadcast a documentary highlighting WWF’s cozy relationship with distinctly unsustainable companies like the genetically modified giant Monsanto and the rainforest destroying palm oil company Wilmar.
In April 2010, the UN Environment Programme named six people “Champions of the Earth” – the UN’s highest award for environmental leadership. Among those recognised this year was Guyana’s president, Bharrat Jagdeo, who won the award for “Biodiversity Conservation & Ecosystem Management”.
Just twenty years ago, Riau Province in Sumatra, Indonesia was 80 per cent forested. Today only 30 per cent is left. The deforestation is driven by the insatiable hunger for timber of two pulp and paper companies: Asia Pacific Resources International (APRIL) and Asia Paper and Pulp (APP).