Skip to main content

Oil Palm: Biodiversity

Volume 479: debated on Monday 29 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what funding he has allocated for evaluation of the biodiversity value of areas of rainforest left within oil palm plantations; and if he will make a statement. (223543)

[holding answer 15 September 2008]: We have not allocated funding specifically for an evaluation of the biodiversity value of areas of rainforest within oil palm plantations. However, biodiversity issues have been covered within broader studies such as the ‘Review of Work on the Environmental Sustainability of International Biofuels Production and Use’, funded by Defra and published in April this year as well as Defra's September 2007 report on Sustainable Commodities (Defra research project EV02019) which examined the environmental and social impacts of eight commodity groups, including palm oil.

Defra is also contributing towards the Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity (TEEB) study which will examine, among other things, the costs of biodiversity loss in the main biomes. This study is due to be published in 2010.