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2014 in Review: That Time We Flooded Wall Street

People gonna rise with the water,We're gonna calm this crisis down,I hear the voice of my great grand-daughter,Saying "shut down Wall Street now!" I’m really grateful.  I’m really grateful to be part of a mass movement that dreams big and takes bold action. Back in September, I woke up on a crisp clear New York morning and joined 3,000 people to shut down the city's financial district as a part of Flood Wall Street.  Responding to a call from the Climate Justice Alliance for civil disobedience actions...

2014 in Review: Big Banks Ditch Mountaintop Removal Coal

In 2014, leading global banks began to turn away from financing mountaintop removal (MTR) coal mining. For years, RAN and other organizations in Appalachia and around the world have warned banks of the severe human and environmental consequences of financing MTR coal. And finally, banks have begun to respond. This year, building on commitments from two US banks, Wells Fargo and JPMorgan Chase, several other banks indicated that they would not finance the largest MTR producers. As of this spring, the French bank BNP Paribas had made a similar commitment,...

2014 in Review: Goldman Sachs Sacks Coal Terminal Investment

Your voice was heard. For communities of the Pacific Northwest, 2014 started off with some good news. On January 7, Goldman Sachs sold off its share in SSA Marine, the corporation behind a colossal coal export terminal proposal near Bellingham, Washington that threatens to ruin the rich biodiversity and unique cultural legacy found in the region. If built, the Gateway Pacific Terminal at Cherry Point would be the largest proposed coal export terminal in the country, with up to 18 mile-long coal trains traveling through local communities every day and nearly 48 million tons of coal exported to Asian markets each year.  Goldman Sachs’ move away from SSA Marine and their coal terminal came after coal companies and their proponents tabled or dropped three out of six proposed coal export terminals in the Pacific Northwest in the previous two years. And it would not have happened...

2014: A Breakthrough Year for Protecting Global Forests

2014 will long stand out as a breakthrough moment in RAN’s history. This is the year when our long term work reached a turning point and began to achieve truly systemic change,  transforming the destructive way palm oil is produced, traded and sold worldwide.  We are always cautious and skeptical about corporate commitments, and in many ways the hard work of turning promises into action begins now, but it is fair to say that a new global benchmark has been set for responsible palm oil production in 2014. Significantly, all the major new policies secured this year that meet that new benchmark include hard fought standards for human and labor rights,as well as climate pollution, alongside their deforestation commitments. This is huge! And it could not have happened without you. The rapid succession of high profile responsible palm oil commitments achieved this year are the...

The Palm Oil Revolution: Turning Promises Into Action

2014 will be remembered for growing waves of grassroots activism calling for “system change” across a range of urgent environmental and social justice challenges. For the globalized food industry, activism to hold corporations accountable for theConflict Palm Oil in their products has created a watershed moment, and provoked a “re-think” of business-as-usual among the world’s largest agribusiness trading companies - Significantly, this includes Cargill, which has seen one after another of their major food manufacturing clients demand a radical re-structuring of global supply chains to provide them with traceable, responsible palm oil. Communities on the frontlines in Indonesia, Malaysia, Papua New Guinea, Liberia and other rainforest regions, with help from allies campaigning across the globe, are working together to expose the links between the palm oil found in most products on grocery store shelves and forest destruction, climate pollution and human and labor rights abuses associated with palm...

Fortune: Unilever, Cargill push to green their palm oil chain

"The RAN investigation implicated 40 palm oil growers operating in an Indonesia conservation area that his home to endangered orangutans as well as Sumatran tigers, rhinos and elephants. One major crude palm oil mill was caught sourcing from these growers and three large traders also...

Publisher's Weekly: Asia Pulp and Paper Tries to Recast Its Image

'The Rainforest Action Network (RAN) has been one of APP’s most vocal critics. Lafcadio Cortesi, of RAN, said that though APP has made important improvements in its environmental and social commitments, “It still has a long way to go.” He noted that APP has stopped...

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