Greenwash of the Week (Take II): the Malaysian Palm Oil Board

By Josh Ran

Wow… if you think that the Malaysian Palm Oil Council’s advertisement (see Stan’s Post) is atrocious, check out the intro video at Malaysian Palm Oil Board’s website.

Amazing, huh? The Malaysian Palm Oil Board’s mission is to “enhance the well-being of the Malaysian oil palm industry through research, development and excellent services”… which is exactly what they do… even if it means ignoring all facts.

According to the video, a monocrop palm oil plantation is “essentially a planted forest”. Well, to me, a forest implies more than one kind of tree, the ability to support a variety of wildlife, and net carbon storage– all of which a palm oil plantation fails to do.

The best part of the video, I’d say, is where they list the environmental attributes of the palm oil industry. Did they mention the clearing of the rainforest, the burning of that forest to clear the land, the resulting erosion and water pollution? Nope. Actually, they claim that palm oil plantations do the opposite.

The question then stands: Have these people ever visited a palm oil plantation, or heck, even spoken to a person who has ever visited a palm oil plantation?

Cause I’ve visited plenty, and I can tell them, they are all sorts of wrong.

Its scary that these that the Malaysian Oil Palm Council and Oil Palm Board can put together these advertisements and share them with the world. Its scary to think that people might actually believe them. More incentive to spread the word about palm oil, and for right now, take advantage of the only thing that these advertisements are good for, and have a good laugh.