Palm oil industry lobbying and greenwashing is like Big Tobacco – World Health Organisation (WHO) Bulletin

What does the $60 billion USD palm oil industry have in common with Big Tobacco? A lot according to this report by the World Health Organisation. Palm oil industry lobbying tactics are used to influence research into the health impacts of palm oil and also to influence consumer buying habits. The dire health and environmental impacts of palm oil are hidden from consumers by clever marketing. These lobbying, marketing and greenwashing tactics are reminiscent of tobacco and alcohol health lobbying.

Treespiracy: Forests are being destroyed against a background of corruption, illegality and apathy

The world’s forests are being destroyed against a background of corruption, illegality and apathy. This article was originally published in The Ecologist magazine, 28th March, 2022 A complex web of financial instruments allowing crime, corruption and wrong-doing, hidden behind shell corporations and offshore companies was exposed with the release of the Panama Papers.  This shadow networkContinue reading “Treespiracy: Forests are being destroyed against a background of corruption, illegality and apathy”

10 reasons why ecolabels & commodity certification are not a solution to stop the EU importing tropical deforestation

71 environmental and human rights groups from around the world – wrote to the EU Commission warning that certification schemes and ecolabels were not sufficient to prevent human rights abuses and deforestation from entering the European Union. Meanwhile industry lobbyists are attempting to weaken the proposed EU laws with these ineffective and corrupt certification schemesContinue reading “10 reasons why ecolabels & commodity certification are not a solution to stop the EU importing tropical deforestation”

Want to avoid palm oil? You need a ‘palm oil free’ label

The most important factor determining whether consumers avoid purchasing a product containing palm oil is not how they feel about orangutans, the environment, or anything else for that matter. It’s whether they know what’s in the product. Melbourne Business School Research reveals that consumers’ ability to diagnose whether a product is made with palm oilContinue reading “Want to avoid palm oil? You need a ‘palm oil free’ label”

Ecocide: why establishing a new international crime would be a step towards interspecies justice

A movement of activists and legal scholars is seeking to make “ecocide” an international crime within the jurisdiction of the International Criminal Court (ICC). The Stop Ecocide Foundation has put together a prestigious international panel of experts that has just proposed a new definition of the term. Heather Alberro, Nottingham Trent University and Luigi Daniele,Continue reading “Ecocide: why establishing a new international crime would be a step towards interspecies justice”

New research: Indirect sourcing of up to 90% of palm oil from Cargill, Wilmar, Musim Mas cannot be traced and is linked to deforestation

New research: Indirect sourcing of up to 90% of palm oil from Cargill, Wilmar, Musim Mas cannot be traced and is linked to deforestation

Conservation activists suing Indonesian zoo could inspire global action on endangered species trade

In a court in rural Indonesia, an environmental group recently filed a lawsuit of global importance. Their case is against a zoo in North Sumatra that it’s alleged illegally exhibited threatened species, including Komodo dragons and critically endangered Sumatran orangutans. Images by Craig Jones Wildlife Photography. Jacob Phelps, Lancaster University The illegal wildlife trade isContinue reading “Conservation activists suing Indonesian zoo could inspire global action on endangered species trade”

Boycotts are a crucial weapon to fight environment-harming firms

Bill Laurance, James Cook University Campaigns and boycotts get the attention of large corporations, because they hit them where it hurts: their reputation and market share. In October 2000, I was driving through downtown Boise, Idaho, and nearly careered off the road. Just in front of me was a giant inflatable Godzilla-like dinosaur, well overContinue reading “Boycotts are a crucial weapon to fight environment-harming firms”

Organized crime is a top driver of global deforestation – along with beef, soy, palm oil and wood products

Jennifer Devine, Texas State University Every year the world loses an estimated 25 million acres (10 million hectares) of forest, an area larger than the state of Indiana. Nearly all of it is in the tropics. Tropical forests store enormous quantities of carbon and are home to at least two-thirds of the world’s living species,Continue reading “Organized crime is a top driver of global deforestation – along with beef, soy, palm oil and wood products”

Greenwashing Tactic #10: Gaslighting, Harassment, Stalking and Attempting to Discredit Critics

Attempting to humiliate, gaslight, discredit, harass and stalk any vocal critics of a brand, commodity or industry certification in order to scare individuals into silence and stop them from revealing corruption Greenwashing’s most insidious and darkest form is the attempt to discredit, humiliate, harass, abuse and stalk individuals in order to silence individuals and stopContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #10: Gaslighting, Harassment, Stalking and Attempting to Discredit Critics”

Ten Tactics of ‘Sustainable’ #PalmOil #Greenwashing

There has never been a more urgent time for consumers to wake up to the devastation wrought by global supermarket brands for palm oil Jump to section 1. Greenwashing with Hidden Trade-Off 2. Greenwashing with No Proof 3. Greenwashing with Vagueness 4. Greenwashing with Fake Labels 5. Greenwashing with Irrelevance & Deflection 6. Greenwashing byContinue reading “Ten Tactics of ‘Sustainable’ #PalmOil #Greenwashing”

Greenwashing Tactic #1: Hidden Trade Off

Claiming a brand or commodity is ‘green’ using a narrow definition or series of characteristics Examples of Hidden Trade off Nestle In 2019, a satellite monitoring system for stopping deforestation was adopted by Nestle, PZ Cussons and others. They are RSPO members with ‘No Deforestation’ policies in place. In 2021, deforestation continues. Greenwashing Reality RealityContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #1: Hidden Trade Off”

Greenwashing Tactic #2: No Proof

Claiming a brand or commodity is green without any supporting evidence The RSPO promises to deliver this with their certification: 1. Improves the livelihoods of small holder farmers 2. Stops illegal indigenous land-grabbing and human rights abuses 3. Stops deforestation They sell the idea of ‘sustainable’ palm oil to consumers so that they will continueContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #2: No Proof”

Greenwashing Tactic #4: Fake Labels

Claiming a brand or commodity is green based on unreliable, ineffective endorsements or eco-labels such as the RSPO, Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) or FairTrade coffee and cocoa. Greenwashing: Fake Labels and fake certifications Ecolabels are designed to reassure consumers that they are purchasing green or sustainable products. In reality the environmental standards are no betterContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #4: Fake Labels”

Greenwashing Tactic #6: The Lesser of Two Evils

Claiming that a brand, commodity or industry is greener than others in the same category, in order to excuse ecocide, deforestation, human rights and animal rights abuses. Jump to section Greenwashing: Lesser of Two Evils: Palm Oil Uses Less Land Than Other Crops Greenwashing messaging is pervasive by researchers Greenwashing messaging is pervasive on socialContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #6: The Lesser of Two Evils”

What is greenwashing?

Over the course of the 20th century, capitalism preserved its momentum by moulding the ordinary person into a consumer. Using advertising to encourage in people the ravenous hunger for purchasing more stuff and the accompanying feeling of hollowness and a need for more and more. Original Tweet Original Tweet Original Tweet Original Tweet Original TweetContinue reading “What is greenwashing?”

Greenwashing Tactic #9: Partnerships, Sponsorships & Research Funding

Using corporate partnerships, sponsorships and research funding to give a commodity, an industry, certification scheme or supermarket brand a ‘greener’ reputation Jump to section Orangutan Land Trust & FairTrade meet in 2014 to discuss partnerships Orangutan Land Trust accepts a cheque from Kulim Malaysia Berhad Greenwashing Partnership: Chester Zoo, Ferrero, Wilmar Greenwashing Partnership: WWF GreenwashingContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #9: Partnerships, Sponsorships & Research Funding”

Greenwashing Tactic #3: Vagueness

Claiming a brand or commodity is ‘green’ or ‘sustainable’ based on broad generalisations, unclear language or vague statements Jump to section Greenwashing: Vagueness in Language Greenwashing: Vagueness in certification standards Reality: Auditing of RSPO a failure Quote: EIA: Who Watches the Watchmen 2 (2019) Quote: Greenpeace: Destruction Certified (2021) Quote: EIA: Burning Questions the CredibilityContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #3: Vagueness”

Greenwashing Tactic #7: Lying

Telling outright lies over and over again to consumers until they are believed as truth Jump to section Greenwashing: Endangered species Reality: Endangered species Greenwashing: Human rights, land-grabbing and livelihoods for workers Reality: Human rights, land-grabbing and livelihoods for workers An open letter from Friends of the Earth and 100 Human Rights NGOs Greenwashing: DeforestationContinue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #7: Lying”

Greenwashing Tactic #8: Design & Words

Using design principles and greenwashing language in order to trigger emotional and unconscious responses in consumers Jump to section Greenwashing: Design Principles Greenwashing Design Example: Palm Done Right Greenwashing Design Example: WWF Palm Oil Scorecard 2021 Greenwashing with Words: Vegan Versus Plant-Based Greenwashing with Words: Destructive Global Brands Claiming to be Vegan What is Veganism?Continue reading “Greenwashing Tactic #8: Design & Words”