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Read about the role forests play in the production of commodities around the world.

88 articles under the Commodities category

Zooming In: “Sustainable” Cocoa Producer Destroys Pristine Forest in Peru

By Octavia Payne and Sarah Alix Mann United Cacao, a publicly-traded, commercial producer of the raw material that goes into chocolate—its symbol on the London Stock Exchange is CHOC—has earned some unwelcome attention recently for its large-scale clearing of trees in the middle of the Peruvian Amazon. Reports about the clearing of over 2,000 hectares […]

Extending Indonesia’s Forest Moratorium Is a Win for Business

By Fred Stolle and Octavia Payne Indonesian President Joko Widodo reaffirmed his commitment to climate leadership this week by renewing Indonesia’s national forest moratorium, which prohibits new licenses to clear key forest areas. While the environmental benefits are well-recognized, the move should also be hailed as a win for businesses and local producers. Local man […]

What Does it Really Mean When a Company Commits to “Zero Deforestation”?

By Sarah Lake and Elizabeth Baer Dozens of companies including industry giants McDonald’s, Unilever, Cargill and Mars have committed to zero deforestation supply chains in the last five years, aiming to reduce their effect on forest landscapes. The potential impact is substantial: a handful of forest commodities—oil palm, beef, soy, and pulp and paper—account for more than 70 percent of all deforestation […]

GUEST POST: Satellites can mislead: policy makers beware!

By David Gaveau and Romain Pirard The loss of old-growth tropical forest area through fire and agricultural expansion has for decades challenged many of the sustainability goals set out by policy makers, conservation groups, and forest managers. As part of the solution to halt tropical deforestation, a strong trend has emerged to assign blame – and it’s industrial […]

Building a Partnership to Advance Sustainability: Unilever and Global Forest Watch Commodities

By Sarah Lake and Elizabeth Baer At first glance, for-profit companies and not-for-profit NGOs may seem to have little in common, but partnerships between the two groups have proved fruitful and will continue to grow in the future. This trend is seen especially within the forest sector, where collaboration between NGOs and companies is increasingly necessary […]

Zooming In: Unexpected Loss in Mbitom, Cameroon

By Benjamin Kessler, Thomas Maschler and Sarah Alix Mann Mbitom, an area in Cameroon’s East region, is experiencing unexplained tree cover loss. In order to identify the drivers of this loss, the GFW Cameroon team set out into the Mbitom forests to investigate. Click on the StoryMap to enter the interactive version.

Map of the Week: Oil Palm-Driven Forest Clearing in Leuser Ecosystem Detected by 2013 Data

The Leuser Ecosystem on the Indonesian island of Sumatra is a hotspot for endangered biodiversity, described by Mongabay as “the only place on Earth where rhinos, orangutans, tigers and elephants live in the same habitat.” A broad area of the Leuser Ecosystem is designated a “National Strategic Area” for Indonesia, and is mapped as a […]

Satellite Data Reveals State of the World’s Mangrove Forests

By Asa Strong and Susan Minnemeyer Mangrove forests play a vital role in erosion and flood control, fisheries support, carbon storage, biodiversity conservation and nutrient cycling. Photo by Klaus Balzano/Flickr. The word “forest” often calls to mind a dense landscape of towering trees. However, some of the most carbon-rich and productive forests are clustered along coastlines in the tropics and subtropics. Mangrove […]

Ethiopia Commits to Restore One-Sixth of its Land

By Aaron Minnick, Tesfay Woldemariam, Chris Reij, Fred Stolle, Florence Landsberg and James Anderson Communities such as this one in the Loka Abaya watershed in Ethiopia’s Rift Valley are the most vulnerable to the impacts of environmental degradation, and are among the communities most enthusiastic about restoring their lands. Photo Credit: Aaron Minnick/WRI. At the UN Climate Summit last month, an alliance of […]