For more than a decade the demand for vegetable oils has been growing at an unsustainable rate, leading to massive tropical deforestation, becoming a major contribution to global warming, according to a recent report by the nonprofit Union of Concerned Scientists. Palm and soy oils have contributed the most to deforestation. One of the USC's recommendations is for farmers to use better management practices to improve crop yields and plant on nonforested areas.
The nonprofit Rainforest Action Network reports that wild orangutan populations have plummeted because of the destruction of their habitat for palm-oil plantations. According to RAN's website, "Scientists warn that these gentle and intelligent animals, among humankind's closest kin, could become extinct within our lifetime if their rainforest homes continue to be destroyed for palm-oil plantations."
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